Late last year, Shopify co-founder and CEO Tobi Lutke used an analogy to describe the strategy of his proprietary e-commerce platform for online stores and retail point-of-sale systems. It resonated with nearly everyone who heard it because it had to do with Star Wars.
Amazon is the Galactic Empire. It’s massive userbase and incredibly efficient supply chain has afforded it the ability to consolidate power and control of online commerce in the United States. Estimates range the $1.5+ trillion company commands anywhere from 37.7% to 50% of domestic online sales. This massive scale has also created an internal network that’s effectively commoditized suppliers. There’s now little to no differentiation for consumers from which Amazon page they purchase a product. It’s all ostensibly the same thing.
Shopify, on the other hand, is “arming the rebels…