Amazon made its reputation by creating disruptive sales opportunities for consumers since day one. By offering items online at discounted prices and providing quick, reliable and affordable shipping, the online retailer has positioned itself as the premier online shopping destination for over a decade.
Then it introduced Dash buttons. And parts of the Internet broke out in furor, incredulity and skepticism.
At first, many believed it was an April Fool's joke. Others thought that it was interesting novelty that would not take hold in American households. Someone even went as far to call it the "harbinger of the problems we all face in the future with the 'Internet of Things.'"
Fast-forward six months, and the picture is decidely different.
Initial reports indicate that Dash buttons are catching on with consumers, with some reports noting between 300,000 and 500,000 buttons shipped since the promotion was opened to Amazon Prime members in April. Gene Munster, an analyst at Piper Jaffray Cos., estimates that 15 million to 20 million Dash button installations could be shipped by 2018 as Prime membership swells to 75 million members during the same time frame.
By that point, one in four Prime users will keep at least one Dash button within their homes, he noted. That amounts to 18.75 million customers with commercial goods restocking needs. That is to say, 18.75 million customers with an in-house option to restock basic home goods that's so easy, it requires the simple push of a button.
So, who's laughing now?