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[8 comments]

Diapers.com Parent Goes to the Dogs, Cats, Etc.

June 8, 2011

Quidsi, the division of Amazon.com that operates Diapers.com and Soap.com, is getting ready to open a new site that promises to change "the way you shop for your pet."

Wag.com is the newest venture of Marc Lore, CEO, and Vinit Bharara, COO, and like its sister sites, the focus is on convenience and service. According to the website, Wag.com will sell over 10,000 products for a variety of pets and offer free two-day shipping on orders over $49 (pet food bags can be heavy), 24/7 customer service and a 365 day return policy.

The new site has some fans built in from Quidsi's other ventures. The site already has over 1,700 friends on Facebook. Sister sites operated by Quidsi also allow for sales through Facebook.

Mr. Lore told Reuters, "Ever since Vinit and I started Diapers.com, customers have been asking when we would offer something for the other baby in the family. That day is almost here."

Internet Retailer ranks Diapers.com as number 72 on its top 500 sites. Parent Amazon is first on the list.

FINANCIALS:     [NASDAQ:AMZN]

Discussion Questions:

Discussion Questions: Are American consumers ready to buy pet products in large numbers online? Will the Quidsi model work in this case?

While we value unfettered opinion, we urge you to show respect and courtesy for people or companies about whom you comment. Keep in mind that this is a public, professional business discussion. RetailWire reserves the right to edit or refuse the publication of remarks that we deem unsuitable. We may also correct for unintended spelling and grammatical errors.

Instant Poll:

How likely is Wag.com to succeed in selling pet products to American consumers?

Comments:

The primary reason why online pet-commerce companies failed in the late 90s was the cost of shipping. Consumers were being asked to pay as much for shipping, as for the products, particularly if they ordered dog food. If Wag.com can offer competitive prices and free shipping, they could have a winning formula.

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Max Goldberg, President, Max Goldberg & Associates

Americans are increasingly inclined to buy anything and everything online. Pet products won't be an exception.

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Ryan Mathews, Founder, ceo, Black Monk Consulting

Wag.com is a brilliant idea on so many levels but mostly because pet owners are obsessive about consuming. The convenience of buying online will be irresistible to pet owners. The only surface aspect of this launch that I don't like is the name because Wag could be confused with Walgreens and their stock symbol.

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David Biernbaum, Senior Marketing and Business Development Consultant, David Biernbaum Associates LLC

I don't see any reason why this effort won't succeed. As long as prices remain competitive, and shipping costs don't drain margins too much, life should be good for Wag.com. The name is cute, and there doesn't seem to be confusion of the name with Walgreens' stock symbol, as David Biernbaum suggests, but that was a good point to make, nevertheless.

The more "community" Wag.com makes the site, the better. Include even more pet rescue/charity content on the site. More blogs, etc. Pet owners are into their pets and want to learn as much as possible. They are a passion "breed," indeed.

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Ralph Jacobson, Global Consumer Products Industry Marketing Executive, IBM

How is this more convenient than buying pet supplies and food via their parent company, Amazon, which currently offers 2321 dog food items, for example, and offers free shipping on most with a $25 purchase?

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Al McClain, CEO, Founder, RetailWire.com

Great move:
Good pricing,
Large inventory,
Shop from home,
Free delivery,
Built in customer base.

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Mel Kleiman, President, Humetrics

Winner.

'mikespindler'

10 years after the internet boom and everything old is new again. The consumer has changed a lot, and things that failed 10 years ago are working now. Tablets, cloud computing, buying household consumables online...I can certainly imagine that shopping for your pet online may be another example.

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Jonathan Marek, Senior Vice President, Applied Predictive Technologies

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