When Amazon launched way back in 1995, the company’s whole purpose was selling books.
Thanks to The Internet Archive, though, we can revisit the early days and see exactly what Amazon used to look like.
Disclosure: Jeff Bezos is an investor in Business Insider through hispersonal investment company Bezos Expeditions.
Jeff Bezos originally wanted to give the company the magical sounding name 'Cadabra.'
Amazon's first lawyer, Todd Tarbert, convinced him that the name sounded too similar to 'Cadaver,' especially over the phone.
Bezos also favoured the name 'Relentless.' If you visit Relentless.com today, guess where it redirects....
He finally chose 'Amazon' because he liked that the company would be named after the largest river in the world, hence the company's original logo.
After 1995, The Internet Archive's first Amazon snapshot comes from 1999. By then, Amazon had already expanded far beyond books. It launched zShops (which eventually became Marketplace, its 3rd-party seller):
One of the funniest things about checking out early Amazon.com is seeing what the 'Top Sellers' were. Amazon updated this page every Monday.
We randomly stumbled upon a site outage in 2000! Back then, Amazon was making about $600 million per quarter, so probably didn't lose *too* much when the site went down. In 2013, however, a 40 minute outage lost the site $120,000 every minute.
As the site gained more retail categories throughout 2000 and 2001, it moved its category navigation to the side:
This snapshot from 2006 highlights a very important time in history: When RAZR phones were super popular.
In 2007, Amazon gave its new logo more attention. It also released its first Kindle in November. The device got prime real estate on the site for a long time:
That style stayed pretty consistent until the beginning of 2015, when Amazon darkened things up a bit:
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