Listen, I’ve been an Amazon Prime member for years now, primarily because of the two-day shipping program. The promise of that keeps slipping, but it looks like Amazon wants to turn that around, according to a comment made by CFO Brian Olsavsky during its earnings call on Thursday.
The comment? That Amazon is “currently working on evolving our Prime shipping program, which has historically been a two-day program, to a one-day shipping program.”
Amazon already has one-day and same-day delivery options for some customers with select items in some zip codes, and 2-hour delivery with Prime Now, but this new revamp of delivery looks like it will be the new standard for all Prime members.
With Prime members spending way more than other Amazon customers, this new one-day delivery program will likely retain memberships while prompting us to buy more. I mean, who doesn’t want the thing they see online, in their hand, the very next day? Olsavsky says the revamp will “open up a lot of potential purchases,” and he couldn’t be more right.
After Amazon got us all hooked on the promise of two-day delivery, the industry has followed
Both Walmart and Target are moving to (often free) two-day shipping as the model, not the exception. The only way for Amazon to stay ahead is to cut its own delivery times in response.
With four consecutive quarters of record profits, this is a good time for the retail giant to make this change. Amazon estimates it will be spending $800 million of its own bank balance this quarter alone to transition to the new one-day delivery system.
So, what will this change mean for consumers? Probably not that much to be honest, other than keeping loyalty to the big A-to-Z. What it will impact is delivery drivers, both from third-party carriers and Amazon’s own Flex or delivery partner programs.
The independent contractor network is already having issues, with chaotic shifts and poor working conditions. While not employed directly by Amazon, the retailer will have to address this going forward, to not erode the trust in the brand it has worked so hard to cultivate.
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