Amazon Fresh Goes Free for Prime
The big news coming from Seattle this week is that Amazon has made its Amazon Fresh grocery delivery service free . This is a major shift from the previous $14.99 a month subscription model offered by the company.
The Amazon Fresh free delivery service is now a part of the Amazon Prime service. This means Amazon Prime members are going to get their deliveries made for free within a 2-hour Prime Now period. The news comes just a few months after Amazon also announced a one-day shipping program for Prime members.
The greatest effect of Amazon Fresh’s free delivery program will be on consumers who were previously too reluctant to shell out $200 a year. This means an expected increase in customers for the service and a boost in Amazon’s grocery revenue streams.
If you are already an Amazon Prime member, Amazon gives you the ability to order a certain amount of food, at very low prices, for free! However, it must be noted that the fees associated with Amazon Prime subscription have been increased recently and the increase looks like a strategy used by the Seattle based tech-giant to off-set the losses incurred from the free delivery service.
Controversial Delivery Tactics
Amazon’s delivery tactics have not been appreciated by city councils. The New York Times has reported that due to the one-day delivery policy of e-commerce giants, the traffic in the Manhattan district has become increasingly chaotic. Amazon’s delivery drivers are being asked to deliver the most volume – 1.5 million packages – and this often means picking up packages of clothing, shoes, and so on. This is not to say that the drivers, contracted by Amazon, are bad people, but the way they deliver is also a critical issue. Amazon is currently being sued by numerous drivers who say that the company has been unfair and deceptive to them. The latest lawsuit was filed by a former driver named Kevin H., in Los Angeles. His lawsuit states, “When a company is operating in a legal gray area, drivers are not able to rely on Amazon’s assurances for safe driving conditions. The drivers must wait until delivery has occurred and confirmed, for the release of their payments.” It seems like Amazon is letting the drivers do the dirty business while paying them a minimum for these gigs.
Amazon’s Continuing Dominance in the Grocery Industry
Amazon is not a new player in groceries. It already carries two of the most popular organic grocery chains in the country—Kirkland & Clark (on the east coast) and Nature Valley and had acquired Whole Foods, one of the largest grocery and natural food retailers in the country. With this news, Amazon is really trying to win the grocery battle in the USA. As often associated with Amazon, the company is playing the long term strategy by driving away its competitors and getting its customers hooked onto the service.