Amazon Music is putting merchandise purchasing options right alongside artist pages, ensuring the e-commerce giant’s media player is also a store.
The trend isn’t new--Spotify already offers listeners a way to purchase merch on an artist’s page. Twitter is also experimenting with “Shop” buttons to facilitate a shopping feature similar to Facebook and Instagram. However, Amazon’s play aligns its music platform more closely with the retailer’s other capabilities.
A key point of differentiation is that Amazon Music allows customers to purchase merch right inside their media app, while Spotify takes users to a third-party retailer. The result for Amazon is a seamless shopping experience for the consumer, representative of the larger trend of growing omnichannel business. The move by Amazon may also be a signal of what’s to come across the company’s platforms, such as its Amazon Prime Video.
“Fashion is an inseparable part of music and culture, and with the addition of merchandise to the Amazon Music app, we’re making it easier for artists to connect with their fans through our app,” said Sean McMullan, Amazon Music’s director of artist product and services. “It’s long been Amazon Music’s mission to strengthen the connection between artists and fans, and today’s launch furthers that goal by uniting streaming audio, music videos, live streams, podcasts, and now merch under one roof for the first time.”
From a merchandising standpoint, the integration offers artists another platform to sell during a time when live concerts have been halted due to the Covid-19 pandemic. Despite a hold on live events, where a lot of artist merch is sold, online sales have paid off for artists who have looked for unique wares to meet the times. For example, artists have turned to selling face masks during the Covid-19 with their logo or jumped in to social movements, as well as reviving vintage designs, according to Merchbar, Spotify’s third-party seller.
Amazon also announced exclusive designs, as well as new collections of merchandise from several artists, including Weezer and Selena Gomez.