Amazon Retools With Unusual Goal: Get Shoppers to Buy Less Amid Coronavirus Pandemic

Amazon.com Inc. AMZN 4.36% is retooling its website to do the opposite of what made it one of the world’s most powerful and dominant companies: Sell fewer items.

Amazon is struggling to meet an immense surge in order volumes and contend with worker absences during the coronavirus pandemic. In response, the Seattle-based company is taking steps to persuade shoppers to put fewer items in their carts, according to people familiar with the matter.

Last month, Amazon began removing fixtures of its site designed to lead customers to make additional purchases. It removed most of its popular recommendation widgets that show shoppers what other people with similar items in their basket also bought, the people said.

Also among the changes, which Amazon hasn’t yet announced publicly, the company decided to cancel Mother’s Day and Father’s Day promotions typically visible on the site to encourage spending. Its annual July shopping extravaganza, Prime Day, has been pushed back indefinitely, and Amazon has scaled back coupons that encourage shoppers to fill their carts.

Wall Street Journal, excerpt posted on  SouthFloridaReporter.com, April 17, 2020