The Retail Industry Leaders Association (RILA) has written a letter to the Federal Trade Commission (FTC) and has urged them to take a closer look at the big tech platforms. RILA group includes the likes of Walmart, Target and BestBuy.
The ascension of Amazon and Google has caused most companies major concerns as their rise to prominence threatens to control a lot of the internet product searches, pricing and product information. The letter said: “It should thus be quite concerning to the Commission that Amazon and Google control the majority of all Internet product search, and can very easily affect whether and how price and product information actually reaches consumers.”
The letter continues: “Moreover, these firms are extraordinarily adept at determining how small changes in the way in which information is conveyed affect consumer behavior — given that nearly everything they do is driven by big-data science and machine learning models,” the letter continues.”
The RILA emphasized that while the group understands the benefits of e-commerce; it is concerned about big tech companies creating a bottleneck through their technology platforms. According to the RILA, this affects how much information is transparently shared with the consumers.
In a response, Amazon said in a statement: “The retail market is fiercely competitive. Amazon represents less than 4% of U.S. retail. The vast majority of U.S. retail sales – 90% -- still occur in physical stores.”