Amazon's Boxing Day sales in Australia were a glimpse of the fierce competition retailers could face in 2018

Getty Images

Shots fired!

Amazon Australia’s launch was variously reported as underwhelming and a non-event after the first day of trading in late November.

You’d think it’s customary to assess business success or failure over a slightly longer period than 24 hours – especially when it’s a global business with net revenue exceeding US$135 billion – though apparently not in this case!

On Boxing Day, Amazon fired a few tasty shots in the direction of the traditional retailers by offering discounts on a wide range of goods.

A quick look at some of the Amazon “top picks” throws up an Acer desktop at under $1,100, with free delivery on eligible orders…

Picture: Supplied.

A Lego jungle play set at $119 with free delivery, under-cutting the competition by up to a quarter…

Picture: Supplied.

A beard trimmer at $85 with free delivery (ditto)…

Picture: Supplied.

…and so on, and so forth.

There were also substantial discounts offered by Amazon on books, clothing, music, DVDs, and other items.

Amazon may or may not capture up to a tenth of Boxing Day’s $2.5 billion or so dollars of retail turnover, but the really interesting thing to see will be whether there is evidence of widespread industry discounting.

A look at major retail lines for laptops, shavers, and a range of household goods suggests that the answer may prove to be a resounding yes in 2018.

As Chris Weston of IG once said, dance near the exit when the disco’s on fire.

Retail deflation: it’s on.

This article was originally published on Pete Wargent’s blog, and was republished here with permission.

Business Insider Emails & Alerts

Site highlights each day to your inbox.

Follow Business Insider Australia on Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn, and Instagram.