Amazon.com (NASDAQ:AMZN) has made the process of buying things incredibly easy.
Members on its website or mobile app can order with a single click. You can also verbally make a purchase using the Echo digital assistant, and some items can even be bought at the push of a button using the company's Dash Buttons.
Now, the company has added the ability to buy things with a few clicks of the remote for its Fire TV users. That, however, is only the tip of the iceberg for the company's plan with its streaming boxes.
What is Amazon doing?
Currently, the online retailer has been slowly adding purchasing options for its Fire TV users. These show up as targeted ads, which let people make a purchase with a few clicks. The program has been running for only a few weeks, but GeekWire reported that it's been performing above expectations.
Details are scant on the proposed QVC-like shopping channel, but launching one makes sense. Fire TV boxes and sticks are tied into users' Amazon accounts. That means the online retailer has already solved one of the biggest problems in completing a sale -- getting a customer to hand over his or her credit card info. Amazon already has that information for Fire TV users, so completing the sale just takes a couple of clicks.
Offering its streaming box customers the opportunity to buy more than apps and video content fits the Amazon Doctrine, which CEO Jeff Bezos shared during a Sept. 6 press event.
"We want to make money when people use our devices, not when they buy our devices," he said.
Creating a shopping channel for Fire TV simply gives consumers another way to buy from Amazon. It's convenient, and it offers a different sort of sales opportunity than a website does. A channel, if it operates like QVC, lets people see how products work and what they look like in a much more dynamic way than a picture on a website. That could lead to increased sales especially on clothing and higher-end technology products.
QVC is not standing pat
While Amazon invades its turf, QVC is firing back by launching a new Apple TV app "that will let viewers quickly order products they see on the screen with a click of the remote," GeekWire reported.
The app will offer live and recorded shows allowing viewers to makes purchases using an on-screen "speed buy" button. It will also let users log in so they won't have to enter payment and shipping information each time they place an order.
This is smart
Amazon has a devoted audience using its Fire TV devices. These are customers of the retailer who have elected to use its streaming boxes probably in many cases because they're Prime members. These are users comfortable buying from Amazon.com and giving them another opportunity to buy in the form of a shopping channel makes sense.
It also makes sense for QVC to move its product into more digital environments. Offering its channel through an app with login functionality can make it easier for frequent customers to buy,
It makes sense for Amazon to move into QVC's world, and it makes sense for the shopping channel to go after customers in the digital realm. It's hard to know if one will affect the other, but it's possible that both have distinct user bases and these moves will simply lead to more sales from current customers. Either way, these are smart moves from each company to go where the customers are.
Daniel Kline owns shares of Apple. He buys from Amazon on a nearly daily basis. The Motley Fool owns shares of and recommends Amazon.com and Apple. Try any of our Foolish newsletter services free for 30 days. We Fools may not all hold the same opinions, but we all believe that considering a diverse range of insights makes us better investors. The Motley Fool has a disclosure policy.