Amazon.co.uk has announced members will get fast grocery delivery – free with their Prime membership – starting today in London and expanding to millions of members across the UK before the end of the year. The product selection includes meat, seafood, produce, snacks and household essentials – everything needed for a weekly shop – with free delivery in two-hour windows on orders over £40. Available today in parts of the South East, including Woking and Guildford, and rolling out across the UK by the end of the year, Prime members will benefit from Amazon’s fastest grocery delivery offer in the UK, usually as fast as same-day for orders placed before 9pm in most areas.
For the first time, Prime members in around 300 postcodes across Greater London and the South East (including London, Surrey, Hampshire, Hertfordshire and Bedfordshire) can do their weekly shop on Amazon Fresh, with local produce, favourite brands and artisan products, included in the cost of Prime membership. Delivery in two-hour windows is now free on orders over £40. The minimum order value has also been lowered from £40 to £15.
Same-day delivery starting in the South East
Starting today, Amazon Fresh is even faster in more than 40 postcodes including Bracknell, Guildford, Maidenhead, Runnymede, Surrey Heath, Windsor, Woking, Wokingham, where Prime members will enjoy its fastest grocery delivery offer in the UK, as fast as same-day for orders placed before 9pm each day in most areas. As well as free delivery in two-hour windows, Prime members in the area can now choose delivery in a one-hour window on all orders over £40 for a delivery fee of £3.99. Prime members in eligible postcodes can request an invitation to start shopping Amazon Fresh by going to www.amazon.co.uk/fresh and they will be alerted via email when able to shop.
Amazon said fast and free grocery delivery from Amazon Fresh will expand to millions of Prime members across the UK before the end of the year. This will include great selection, fast delivery and all of the best of Amazon Fresh, the online retailer added. Same-day delivery will usually be available for orders placed before 9pm in most areas.
Customers can choose from tens of thousands of grocery items from major brands including Booths, Whole Foods Market, Pepsi, Danone, Arla, Warburtons, Britvic and many more. Amazon Fresh customers will also be offered a selection of thousands of premium products from artisan and local producers, including GAIL’s Artisan Bakery, C.Lidgate and Paxton & Whitfield.
Amazon said all perishable products have a guaranteed minimum shelf life and, with its Freshness Guarantee, customers can receive a refund if they are unhappy with the freshness of the products they receive.
Christopher Rossbach, manager of the J. Stern & Co. World Stars Global Equity fund, commented: “Amazon Fresh is another growing arm of its business and this move to discount its service will send shockwaves through the UK grocery sector. The industry is forecast to be worth some £220bn by 2023 and it represents a very attractive addressable market for Amazon. This is an important step in its journey to becoming a $2tn company.
“Sparked by the pandemic, estimates are that online food delivery has almost doubled over the last four months. As more people get comfortable with online food delivery, Amazon, with its exceptional logistics and brand, has a great opportunity to take a significant share of the UK grocery market over the long term, and it represents a clear headwind for competitors in the space.”
Michael Schirrmacher, UK managing director at Bloomreach, said: “Amazon’s further investment in its online grocery service shows how strong the online grocery sector is right now. With the pandemic leading to more of us shopping for our essential shopping online, the company has sensed an opportunity and is planning on seizing it. This plays a part into a larger picture of well-prepared businesses doing well during the pandemic: those who have previously invested in their digital commerce channels are better equipped to take advantage of changing consumer habits and are now reaping the benefits from it.
“There has been a flurry of digital innovation in online grocery over the past few months: from Ocado prioritising the most vulnerable and NHS workers to Sainsbury’s brand new queueing app helping shoppers decide when to visit a shop, the market has shown how quickly it’s adjusted to a new world. By making inflexible deliveries a thing of the past, Amazon is banking on the notion that providing a fast, efficient and quality experience can increase its share of the online grocery market pie. Our State of Commerce Experience report, conducted by Forrester and commissioned by Bloomreach, shows this is a smart move: nearly 40% of respondents to the survey stated that they would pay more for a better experience. Businesses must understand how to amplify and grow their digital channel offerings to ensure they can meet the changing expectations of today’s customers, otherwise they will be left in the wake of trailblazers like Amazon.”