Progressive Grocer recently reported that, starting this summer, Amazon AMZN -1.4%AMZN -1.4%AMZN -1.4% will give Prime savings to Amazon Fresh customers in a big, bad way.
Starting June 29th, Amazon plans to “offer a 20% discount for Prime members to use on select everyday items at Amazon Fresh Stores.”
The only question is – what the heck does “select everyday items” actually mean?
Those that follow retail closely will know that the phrase “select items” is oftentimes intentionally ambiguous, used to make something sound bigger than it is. It is on par with “coming soon” or “will roll out sometime later this year.”
As a result, more often than not, it can be a big red flag.
But, au contraire mon frère on this one, because Amazon’s use of “select items” is about the furthest thing from a red flag.
I asked Amazon’s VP of Amazon Prime, Jamil Ghani, to clarify the above statement, and the answer gives an indication into just how big and serious Amazon is about its investment in its Amazon Fresh Stores.
According to an Amazon spokesperson, the “select items” in question will encompass everything from organic 100% grass-fed ground beef to Hidden Valley Ranch Salad Dressing, along with, of course, everyone’s favorite new trendy item as well, Oatmilk.
Below is a larger sample list of discounted items that Amazon also shared for this article:
- Organic 100% Grass-Fed Ribeye Steak, 10oz
- Planet Oat Original Oatmilk, 52 fl oz
- 365 by Whole Foods MarketWFM 0.0%, Trimmed Brussels Sprouts, 12 Ounce
- Fresh Brand Broccoli Stir Fry, 15.5 oz
- Hidden Valley Original Ranch Salad Dressing & Topping, Gluten Free – 16 Ounce Bottle
- 365 Everyday Value, Cage-Free Non-GMO Large Brown Grade A Eggs, 12 ct
- Fresh Brand Raw Large Easy Peel Tail On Shrimp Value Pack (31-40 Count/Pound), 2 lb (Frozen)
- Verde Farms Organic 100% Grass-Fed Ground Beef 85/15, 1 lb
- Sabra Hummus Classic, 10 Ounce
- Dietz & Watson Honey Maple Ham
- 365 by Whole Foods Market, Sauce Pasta Italian Herb Organic, 25 Ounce
- 365 by Whole Foods Market, Sauce Marinara Organic, 25 Ounce
Everyday discounts on any of these items, not to mention any additional items not listed above, would no doubt go a long way to defraying the cost of one’s weekly grocery shopping trip, but 20% off takes it to a whole other level.
And, oh, but wait, there’s more.
The other thing Amazon mentioned, when asked about the discount, is that the discount will also be available on a rotating selection of prepared foods. All week long, seven days a week, Amazon will offer Amazon Prime members who shop Amazon Fresh stores 20% off on their quick run-in meals at lunch or on their way home from work.
Here is a sample of what this idea look like:
- Monday – Salad Bar
- Tuesday – Sandwiches
- Wednesday – Soups
- Thursday – Prepared Salads
- Friday – California Rolls
- Saturday – Cheese Pizza
- Sunday – Deli Meats and Cheese
Again 20% off. 20% off. Each and every day.
That is downright insane, and more importantly it shows a glimpse into what Amazon is about to unleash with Amazon Fresh.
For context, Amazon, according to its website, has roughly 33 Amazon Fresh stores in operation right now, all primarily located in California, Illinois, Virginia, Washington, Pennsylvania, and Maryland.
So will the majority of Americans even benefit from these deals? Not a chance.
But that is also not the point.
The point is that, in the markets where Amazon does have Amazon Fresh stores, it plans to make them as compelling on price as possible, leveraging its Costco-like Prime membership, to drive user adoption.
All of which could just be step one to a much greater and more customer friendly plan. As more and more Amazon Fresh stores roll out, which it seems like one or more new ones roll out each and every week, Amazon will have two advantages compared to every other grocery retailer in the country.
First, the latest Amazon Fresh stores are all checkout-free, which means customers will never have to wait in another line ever again.
Pricing, by way of the Amazon Prime subsidy, and the use of electronic shelf-labels in all Amazon Fresh stores, means Amazon can change its prices and offer deals on a dime. Contrast this with traditional grocers who are still printing price signs on physical labels, a process that takes one to two weeks to put into motion for most, and it is easy to see the advantage Amazon will eventually have here, too.
Said another way, the long-posited idea of Amazon Prime Day-like deals on the 1st and the 15th of every month, stochastic by locale, may not be that far off.
And like 20% off deals on everything from prepared foods to salad dressing, this is a world Americans no doubt would love and that they probably need more than ever right now.
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