Microsoft’s New eCommerce Tool Takes Aim At Amazon

Microsoft has released a new a new tool to help businesses manage their brands online, according to a report by CNBC.

The product is called Dynamics 365 Commerce, and it’s part of Microsoft’s increased competition with Amazon in the online commerce space. It allows for brands to make their own product pages, as well as have space for customer interaction like reviews and ratings.

It’s also meant to complement other Microsoft eCommerce offerings, so that brands can keep in touch with customers or view analytics.

Microsoft’s cloud business Azure is taking on Amazon Web Services (AWS), and retail is a big battleground for both companies. The company provides an alternative for direct Amazon competitors like Walmart, Walgreens and Kroger, which have all chosen to go with Microsoft rather than feed revenue to their biggest competitor.

AWS has plenty of retail clients of its own, including Kenneth Cole, Levi’s, Sainsbury’s and J. Crew.

The new eCommerce technology from Microsoft expands on previously released Microsoft’s Dynamics 365 for Retail, which handled things like staffing, promotions and supply chain management. The new technology came from feedback from customers on what could be done to improve the product, which is available for customers in a private preview.

A U.K. food and clothing store called Marks & Spencer has been using another new Microsoft release called Dynamics 365 Connected Store, which has the ability to send alerts to workers through info gleaned from cameras and sensors.

Paul Airey, the company’s head of technology for retail and digital stores, said the company has been using Azure for years but it wanted to up the technology and help to improve shoppers’ experience with it.

“It’s fair to say, as a retailer I don’t think we’re the only ones who wouldn’t be choosing AWS,” Airey said.

Other companies are also excelling in the eCommerce space, including Shopify, which has improved its stock price by 130 percent, and Adobe, which recently acquired eCommerce outfit Magento for $1.68 billion.