Amazon is a Frenemy to all of us, but I'm calling it out for being being a toxic drain who is disguised as a helpful friend. You know that friend who gives you unsolicited advice, "I know how you should decorate your house" or "people really don't like it when you ____". WTF?
While Amazon delightfully enables us to have the gift of ease, it is a major resource sucker. It quietly drains our bank accounts with "One-click". Productivity is interrupted as we multi-task Amazon shopping into our day. It single-handedly drove the extinction of the beautiful, uplifting small bookstores and toystores that used to be shining examples of humans at our best. Worst of all, the damage to the earth. The trees giving up their lives to be turned into shipping boxes. The petroleum used to make All. Those. Plastic. Inserts. All this, so we can spend more time on Netflix and on our phones? When did we decide binge watching TV is a good use of our time but walking around a grocery store is too much work? On top of all this, about 1/4 of my orders are messed up. We make do with broken, scratched, and missing items. I have been a guilty patron for years now, but today I'm making my mart. Arkadiance is officially breaking up with Amazon and I'm not using it for items we can easily pick up from a retailer.
My small Arkadiance team has spent easily 100+ hours and thousands of dollars in the last few months working to create our Amazon profile, load our products and marketing content to their sales channels, and adjusting our operations to fit their requirements.
Friday, I made the decision it's not worth it. Fundamentally, we have different values. Amazon values large, cheap and fast and Arkadiance values small, natural and carefully-made. Amazon values production speed and doesn't care whether products are recyclable or natural. In fact, they have no standards for what is "natural" and let anyone pay to play. I looked up "natural skin care" on Amazon, I couldn't find even one product that was actually natural. The unofficial natural products standard is to be at least 70% plant-based.
I am choosing to stay focused on improving the health and vitality of my clients, inside and out. I started this business to offer products that are better solutions than anything else on the market. Better for you, better for the earth, and better results. And it shows. At this point, 99% of our growth has come from referrals. Every week more and more strangers become clients and continue to earn us five star reviews. This concept is just phenomenal given we are not and never will be a "network-marketing" company. Every one of our referrals comes from a truly passionate client, not as a paid endorsement.
Arkadiance costs are invested in:
1) Product development & innovation.
2) Communicating with our growing client base.
3) Improving our delivery experience and operational efficiency.
I'd love to know what you think. Do you think I'm making the wrong or right decision for my business and my life? What has been your experience with Amazon (as a shopper or a business)?
Wishing you Radiance and Joy,