贝索斯致股东信(2002)

qimoe 发布于 2 个月前

致我们的股东:

从很多角度来看,Amazon.com都不是一家寻常商店。我们有大量货架上根本放不下的精选商品;我们每年更新19次库存;我们为每个消费者定制主页;我们用房地产来换技术(技术每年都在变得又好又便宜);我们展示客户的评价;你可以花几秒钟和仅仅一次点击购买到商品;我们把旧货的购买链接就放在新货旁边为你提供更多选择;我们给我们的合作商家提供我们最重要的“不动产”——商品页面,这样如果他们能提供更高的价值,就请上座!

我们最令人兴奋的特点却常常难以让人理解。他们觉得我们想同时提供世界领先的用户体验和最低的价格,这简直是彻头彻尾的唐吉柯德式的痴心妄想。传统门店经过时间洗礼证明同时想满足这两点是不可能的,可是Amazon.com如何能做到?

答案就在于我们将大量的针对用户体验的服务的成本给固定化了,比如不匹配选择、可展开的商品详情、个性化推荐和其他软件特性。在这种成本固定化之后(这更像一个出版业的模型而非零售业的模型),我们扩张的成本就非常低。同时,在我们不断修正以减少出错率之后,这部分成本还会进一步降低。排Bug让我们既能控制成本又能提供更好的体验。

我们相信鱼和熊掌可以兼得,而这对我们也至关重要。过去的一年我们的成绩证明了这一点。

首先,我们持续提升用户体验。比如今年的购物季,在订单量破纪录的同时,我们的服务质量也再创新高。我们物流中心(fulfillment center,译者注:貌似这是亚马逊独创的概念)订单处理周期比去年缩短了17%,而同时我们近乎苛刻的内部客户满意度调查提高了13%

在现有的品类中,我们努力增加优选商品。电子类去年仅在美国就增加了40%的商品,我们现在能比一家电子城提供十倍多的选择了。即使在我们已经深耕八年的美国书籍市场,我们还是增加了15%的商品,尤其是那些更难找几乎已经绝版的书。当然我们还增加了新的品类——服饰,仅上线60天就已经坐拥500+大品牌的服装。我们的用户共买了15.3万件T恤,10.6万条裤子和3.1万件内衣。

在今年全美消费者满意指数调查中,我们打破了自己的记录,拿到了88分,在各行各业中皆是史无前例。

(译者注:此处省略这家机构盛赞亚马逊的段落)

其次,在关注用户体验之余,我们还在各个品类都大大降价。我们还推出了25美金以上的订单免邮的服务。在其他的国家,我们也在做类似的事情。

我们降价的目标不是在一小部分我们处心积虑挑选的商品上限时促销,不,我们要做的让全 品 类的商品天 天 都 低 价!为了证明这一点,我们拿我们的定价和一家业界知名的连锁书店做了对比。我们没有精心挑选那些我们卖的便宜的书来比,而是直接按照他们2002年图书畅销榜的100名来。我相信这应该就是绝大多数读者们日常会购买的书,其中有45本精装书和55本平装书,囊括了文学、小说、奇幻、惊悚、非虚构、儿童、鸡汤等等。

我们跑到他们在西雅图和纽约的图书超市,分别记录了这100本书的价格。要知道,我们花了6小时跑遍了他们四家店才找全这100本书!经我们整理之后,我们发现:

* 100本畅销书的总价,在他们商店是1561美金,而在亚马逊是1195美金。选择后者你将节省366美金,或者相当于77折

* 100本书中有72本我们更便宜,有25本价格一样,还有三本竟然他们更便宜(我们想也没想就把这三本书的价格立刻降了)

* 在这些实体书店,100本里只有15本在打折,其他都是原价销售,而我们76本都在打折,只有24本原价销售。

退一步说,你还是能找到一些理由在实体店买书的,比如如果你想立刻拿到书。但是这样你必须多付出很多,如果你想又省时间又省钱——来Amazon.com吧!

第三,我们低价和用户体验两手抓两手硬的举措在财务数据上也体现了出来。这一年的净销售增长了26%到达了39亿美金,单位销售涨了34%涨的更快。我们最最重视的自由现金流达到了1.35亿,比去年增长了3.05个亿。

总之,对顾客好就是对股东好。

再一次,我附了1997年的第一封致股东信,我希望现在和未来可能的股东们可以读一读。鉴于我们的高速增长和互联网行业的的高速扩张,你们将会知道我们遵循的原则一直没有改变。

最后再重复一遍,我代表Amazon.com感谢用户们的信任,感谢员工们的努力,感谢股东们的鼓励和支持。

Jeffrey P.Bezos

(Vinchent翻译)


英文原文

To our shareholders:

In many ways, Amazon.com is not a normal store. We have deep selection that is unconstrained by shelf space. We turn our inventory 19 times in a year. We personalize the store for each and every customer. We trade real estate for technology (which gets cheaper and more capable every year). We display customer reviews critical of our products. You can make a purchase with a few seconds and one click. We put used products next to new ones so you can choose. We share our prime real estateÌour product detail pagesÌwith third parties, and, if they can oÅer better value, we let them.

One of our most exciting peculiarities is poorly understood. People see that we're determined to oÅer both world-leading customer experience and the lowest possible prices, but to some this dual goal seems paradoxical if not downright quixotic. Traditional stores face a time-tested tradeoÅ between oÅering high touch customer experience on the one hand and the lowest possible prices on the other. How can Amazon.com be trying to do both?

The answer is that we transform much of customer experienceÌsuch as unmatched selection, extensive product information, personalized recommendations, and other new software featuresÌinto largely a Ñxed expense. With customer experience costs largely Ñxed (more like a publishing model than a retailing model), our costs as a percentage of sales can shrink rapidly as we grow our business. Moreover, customer experience costs that remain variableÌsuch as the variable portion of fulÑllment costsÌimprove in our model as we reduce defects. Eliminating defects improves costs and leads to better customer experience.

We believe our ability to lower prices and simultaneously drive customer experience is a big deal, and this past year oÅers evidence that the strategy is working.

First, we do continue to drive customer experience. The holiday season this year is one example. While delivering a record number of units to customers, we also delivered our best-ever experience. Cycle time, the amount of time taken by our fulÑllment centers to process an order, improved 17% compared with last year. And our most sensitive measure of customer satisfaction, contacts per order, saw a 13% improvement.

Inside existing product categories, we've worked hard to increase selection. Electronics selection is up over 40% in the U.S. alone over the prior year, and we now oÅer 10 times the selection of a typical big box electronics store. Even in U.S. books, where we've been working for 8 years, we increased selection by 15%, mostly in harder-to-Ñnd and out-of-print titles. And, of course, we've added new categories. Our Apparel and Accessories store has more than 500 top clothing brands, and in its Ñrst 60 days, customers bought 153,000 shirts, 106,000 pairs of pants, and 31,000 pairs of underwear.

In this year's American Customer Satisfaction Index, the most authoritative study of customer satisfaction, Amazon.com scored an 88, the highest score ever recordedÌnot just online, not just in retailingÌbut the highest score ever recorded in any service industry. In ACSI's words:

""Amazon.com continues to show remarkably high levels of customer satisfaction. With a score of 88 (up 5%), it is generating satisfaction at a level unheard of in the service industry.... Can customer satisfaction for Amazon climb more? The latest ACSI data suggest that it is indeed possible. Both service and the value proposition oÅered by Amazon have increased at a steep rate.''

Second, while focused on customer experience, we've also been lowering price substantially. We've been doing so broadly across product categories, from books to electronics, and we've eliminated shipping fees with our 365 day-per-year Free Super Saver Shipping on orders over $25. We've been taking similar actions in every country in which we do business.

Our pricing objective is not to discount a small number of products for a limited period of time, but to oÅer low prices everyday and apply them broadly across our entire product range. To illustrate this point, we recently did a price comparison versus a major well-known chain of book superstores. We did not hand pick a choice group of books against which we wanted to compare. Instead, we used their published list of their 100 bestsellers for 2002. It was a good representation of the kinds of books people buy most, consisting of 45 hardcover titles and 55 paperbacks across many diÅerent categories, including Literature, Romance, Mystery and Thrillers, NonÑction, Children's, Self-Help, and so on.

We priced all 100 titles by visiting their superstores in both Seattle and New York City. It took us six hours in four of their diÅerent superstores to Ñnd all 100 books on their list. When we added up everything we spent, we discovered that:

‚ At their stores, these 100 bestselling books cost $1,561. At Amazon.com, the same books cost $1,195 for a total savings of $366, or 23%.

‚ For 72 of the 100 books, our price was cheaper. On 25 of the books, our price was the same. On 3 of the 100, their prices were better (we subsequently reduced our prices on these three books).

‚ In these physical-world superstores, only 15 of their 100 titles were discountedÌthey were selling the other 85 at full list price. At Amazon.com, 76 of the 100 were discounted and 24 were sold at list price.

To be sure, you may Ñnd reasons to shop in the physical worldÌfor instance, if you need something immediatelyÌbut, if you do so, you'll be paying a premium. If you want to save money and time, you'll do better by shopping at Amazon.com.

Third, our determination to deliver low price and customer experience is generating Ñnancial results. Net sales this year increased 26% to a record $3.9 billion, and unit sales grew at an even faster 34%. Free cash ÖowÌour most important Ñnancial measureÌreached $135 million, a $305 million improvement over the prior year.1

In short, what's good for customers is good for shareholders.

Once again this year, I attach a copy of our original 1997 letter and encourage current and prospective shareowners to take a look at it. Given how much we've grown and how much the Internet has evolved, it's notable that the fundamentals of how we do business remain the same.

As always, we at Amazon.com are grateful to our customers for their business and trust, to each other for our hard work, and to our shareholders for their support and encouragement.

JeÅrey P. Bezos

Founder and Chief Executive OÇcer

Amazon.com, Inc.

1 Free cash Öow for 2002 of $135 million is net cash provided by operating activities of $174 million less purchases of Ñxed assets of $39 million. Free cash Öow for 2001 of negative $170 million is net cash used in operating activities of $120 million less purchases of Ñxed assets of $50 million.