For those of you waiting for further proof that Amazon is eating the world of e-commerce, your day has come.
A new study shows that 44% of U.S. consumers bypass a web search and go straight to Amazon to search for products, while just 34% of people opt for search engines such as Google, Bing and Yahoo! to hunt for products first.
In 2012, Forrester found 30 percent of consumers searched Amazon first.
The increase is likely attributable to the growth in Amazon Prime subscribers.
The membership service grew 150 percent last year to as many as 50 million U.S. subscribers.
"Amazon has turned a slow-bleed of search engines' and retailers' e-commerce importance into a gushing wound," BloomReach’s marketing head Joelle Kaufman said in a release.
"Search engines like Google have done their part by making product discovery and search intuitive, convenient and seamless; but if retailers want to slow Amazon's dominance, then they must integrate technology that creates frictionless experiences for their customers across channels,” Kaufman said.
The shifts in consumer behavior puts individual retailers in the uncomfortable position of watching more and more of their customers digitally drive by their shops and head straight for the Everything Store.
And in a sense, retailers are also suffering at the hands of search engines — such as Google, Yahoo! and Bing — which have trained legions of Web users to expect instant and extremely relevant results and recommendations for every search they type into a search box.
The BloomReach study, which surveyed 2,000 consumers, also uncovered a gap between retailers and their customers in their thinking about smartphones’ role in shopping excursions.
Consumers shop with their phones, but buy with their desktops.
In fact, at a time when mobile search traffic is outpacing desktop traffic, 81% of consumer said they prefered to make actual purchases on their desktop computers, an indication that viewing shopping as a seamless experience is a key to success.