By Joshua McMorrow-Hernandez for CoinWeek ……
Internet bullion coin giant American Precious Metals Exchange, more widely known as APMEX, has good reason to celebrate these days.
APMEX’s success in the investment world and the ever-evolving Internet market recently caught the attention of Internet Retailer, an online market watcher that tracks the success of commerce websites. In its recently published Top 500 Guide, which ranks the top 500 e-commerce sites based in North America during 2014, APMEX was ranked the #1 Specialty eRetailer and placed 46th overall, putting the bullion retailer one spot ahead of venerable national bookseller Barnes & Noble.
The Oklahoma City-based APMEX, founded by Company President Scott Thomas in 2000, has grown to become one of the leading buyers and sellers of silver and gold bullion and numismatic coins in the market. And despite market ups and downs–and the company’s own troubles in the past–sales figures from 2014 show that APMEX is thriving as a business that now earns more than $1 billion a year in gross sales.
The online merchant sees more than one million monthly page visits, including 400,000 unique visitors a month. The typical customer spends an average of $2,000 per purchase.
But the esteem of Internet Retailer isn’t the only recognition APMEX has received over the years.
Not only is APMEX an authorized distributor for many major world governments that mint and distribute gold and silver bullion coins, but its president Scott Thomas earned the Presidential Award from the American Numismatic Association (ANA) in 2009.
CEO Ken Lewis says that the company’s success depends on not just keeping their fingers on the pulse of what’s happening in the industry but also on knowing what customers want.
“APMEX has risen to the top of our industry and become a key player in the Internet landscape as a result of continuous investment in what our customers prefer, including leading technology, broad assortments, lightning-quick fulfillment, and concierge customer service. Even after 15 years in business, we are never satisfied and do not take what we have for granted,” says Lewis. “We know we have to earn our customers’ trust every step of the way. We are honored to be featured in the Internet Retailer Top 500 Guide, but more importantly, we are blessed to have such a loyal customer base.”
Mike Garofalo, Director of Numismatics, says that the APMEX catalog has become much more expansive and diverse as of late. “In just the last year, we have grown our assortment from 5,000 to over 11,000 products with a goal of offering customers an easier way to shop for both numismatic and bullion items. I look forward to what the future holds as we attempt to do our part to bring broader visibility to the benefits of precious metals investment.”
Where APMEX Is and Where It’s Going
The company is an aggressive buyer and offers significant discounts on the items it sells – especially bulk orders purchased by check or bank wire, which provides a small savings compared to the cost of using a credit card or PayPal for purchases.
Social Media Manager Cashlie White stated “…a lot of younger people look us up on Facebook and other social media”, and it is just another way that APMEX stays connected with its broad customer base, especially Millennials and Generation “X”.
APMEX is also trying to spark an interest for coins among younger people. White explains: “APMEX went to [the ANA] Coin Camp, and did a presentation… about how you can turn your hobby into your job,”
It is this type of outreach that shows a commitment to growing the hobby and is just another reason the company has experienced such growth in recent years and is being rewarded with high marks from Internet Retailer Top 500.
Coins from APMEX Currently Available on eBay