Amazon Fresh, the grocery delivery service arm of the behemoth, is expanding its footprint in the UK.
This move will help the company take advantage of the increased focus on grocery doorstep delivery due to the Covid-19 pandemic.
Amazon Fresh, which is currently available in about 300 postcodes in and around London, will expand to cover more areas by the year-end. According to the Guardian, Prime members in Birmingham, Manchester, and Edinburgh will be among the first to benefit from a wider rollout.
From July 28, grocery orders above £40 requiring two-hour delivery will be free, but if a customer wants a one-hour slot, they will have to pay £3.99. Orders under £40 will cost £3.99 for two-hour delivery and £6.99 for one hour. The minimum order value has also been reduced from £40 to £15.
Until recently, grocery purchases needed a monthly add-on fee or a delivery fee of £3.99 or £2.99, respectively. This was apart from the annual Prime subscription fee (£79). According to BBC News, Amazon Fresh has about 10,000 products, including fresh, chilled, and frozen food products.
This aggressive push from Amazon might mean increased pressure on other online players and offline supermarkets. With its huge war chest, Amazon can afford to give meaningful discounts and do free delivery.
Some of Amazon Fresh’s rivals in the UK include Waitrose Rapid, Sainsbury’s Chop Chop, and Ocado Zoom.
“Prime members love the convenience of grocery delivery at home, which is why we’ve made Amazon Fresh a free benefit of Prime,” said Russell Jones, country manager, Amazon Fresh UK. “Grocery delivery is one of the fastest-growing businesses at Amazon … We will keep improving the grocery shopping experience so that millions of Prime members across the UK will have access to fast, free delivery of groceries.” Russell Jones was quoted in The Guardian’s article.
E-grocery has seen a huge uptick across the globe due to the coronavirus. Online players like US-based Walmart, and India-based Flipkart, among others, have been catering to increased grocery demands since the beginning of the pandemic.
In fact, multiple reports have said that Walmart will soon release a subscription service called Walmart+, and grocery is expected to be a crucial benefit of the subscription.
The pandemic might just have been the push that E-grocery players needed to firmly entrench themselves in the minds of the customers.
Seamless logistics will play a key role in enabling express and same-day deliveries. Logistics tech platforms that help with route planning and optimization, assigning on-demand orders, and visibility of on-ground executives will play a crucial role in determining the success of the E-grocery business.