The Ever Changing Amazon

Celia Budwig
May 30, 2016 · 3 min read

When people ask me what is the one thing I don’t think I can live without, I hesitate. Most people would say their phone, their family, etcetera, but for me? My Amazon Prime account. I can get a plethora of items, from books to water bottles to Italian candies, and they arrive in a beautiful amazon.com box in two days with free shipping. What else could a girl ask for? Amazon.com was launched in 1995, and was an immediate success. In December of 1998, the website looked like:

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Amazon.com December 2, 1998

The website was surprisingly colorful and bright, which makes it more inviting in my opinion. Amazon Prime isn’t a thing yet (how people functioned without it I cannot fathom), but the website posts a lot of deals pertaining to books and technology for people to take advantage of. As the website kept growing in popularity, the layout and the theme of the home page changed.

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Amazon.com Nov 12, 2002

In 2002, a little bit less than a decade after the launch, amazon.com took a chance and changed the color of their homepage from its peaceful white and blue to a more in your face red and yellow. The website features more stores, such as the new “Accessories” department, and displays that the brand has partnered with Target, though that has since ended.

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Amazon.com June 2, 2010

Eight years passed between the two above pictures, but during those eight years, amazon.com kept its homepage relatively simplistic and unchanging, until the middle of 2010. Amazon went back to its familiar color scheme, and made the website more streamlined and simplistic. They also started advertising for their Kindle, which was a newer technology at the time. Less than three years later, however, the Kindle, and the website homepage as a whole, changed completely.

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Amazon.com June 8, 2013

Long gone is the blue of amazon.com. Instead, a pure white background remains, making the items for sale the true focus of the page. Now selling clothing, technology, phones, watches, and less and less books than before, amazon.com is now basically a mall on the screen of your phone or computer. And unlike malls, which are cluttered and overwhelming, amazon has made it so their website is almost heavenly due to its simplicity, which is truly what we all desire, right?

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Amazon.com May 29, 2016

Wrong. Amazon scrapped the pure white look, and went back to what it does best. Blues. But it did keep the simplicity of the previous years layouts, and even took it further, making everything very uniform and geometric. There’s a reason that amazon.com is the largest Internet based retailer in the world, and that reason is the website. People trust it when they open the URL. If the website were cluttered and disorganized, one could propose that the website would not be as successful.

In an age where you can buy anything and everything online, there is a lot of competition. Why buy something one place, when the other place has it for cheaper? What if one place offers free shipping, but the other will give you an online coupon for the next time you shop? There are so many different methods and options for online purchases, but Amazon has made itself such a powerhouse by staying simplistic and realistic, and drawing its customers in with calming colors and great deals. And on that note, I’m going to see if that set of Disney Princess mugs is still on sale…

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