Amazon, data isn’t everything; consider emotions in order to humanise your business

At the outset, Amazon would need to consider customers as humans. There are no two ways about it. Customers aren’t statistical entities that express growth in business. Yesterday, I read reports of a doormat available on Amazon Canada. The doormat had the pattern of the Indian national flag on it. Turns out, it caused furore on social media, with several users protesting against it online. Yesterday, the Indian external affairs minister Sushma Swaraj put out a series of tweets warning Amazon to take the product down, and issue an apology. It didn’t end there. Not failing to do so would’ve have made it very difficult to continue operating in India.

Soon enough, the product was taken down. Before you brush it aside as a dumb decision by Amazon to list these kind of products on the website, consider this. The American flag and the Union Jack are available as part of several products that would otherwise be considered offensive.

 Amazon, data isn’t everything; consider emotions in order to humanise your business

The American flag doormat is listed on Amazon.

This comes across as a human problem. Someone somewhere just failed to understand customers. And context is critical. A Republican-Democrat debate in the US that also brings in the faith of the ‘American Bible Belt’ could be laughed off. But, it’s far different from poking fun at any other faith. A comment, on say Muslims or Hindus, could spiral into an international controversy. Such are the times we live in. The world’s a village. One mans’s joke is another man’s ammunition.

Amazon is customer focussed

I purchased an Amazon Kindle in 2010. It was the Kindle Keyboard. It wasn’t sold in India back then. So I asked a friend to get it from the US. I loved the packaging – subtle, plain cardboard – that opened like a pizza box...

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Updated Date: Jan 12, 2017 12:58:59 IST