TECHNOLOGY

Amazon looks to reduce shipping costs, carbon footprint with ‘Amazon Day’ program

BY Dan Berthiaume

Amazon is offering Prime members a more tailored delivery option that will also help the retailer lower its escalating shipping costs and reduce its carbon footprint.

The e-tail giant is introducing Amazon Day, a service that allows Prime members in the U.S. to select one day of the week to be their delivery day. This enables Amazon to group and deliver purchases together, which potentially reduces the number of packages. Amazon Day participants can still select other Prime shipping options for items they do not want to include as part of their Amazon Day shipment.

Once Prime members select a day of the week that works best for them, they can choose to use the Amazon Day delivery option any time. Customers can also change their Amazon Day at checkout to another day that works best for them.

“Prime members can now choose to get their orders delivered together in fewer boxes whenever possible on the day that works best for them,” said Maria Renz, VP, delivery experience at Amazon. “We’ve been testing this program with a group of Prime members and Amazon Day has already reduced packaging by tens of thousands of boxes – a number that will only continue to grow now that the program is available to Prime members nationwide.”

In addition to increasing the convenience and predictability of Prime deliveries for consumers, Amazon Day also assists the company with its Shipment Zero carbon reduction initiative. The program aims to make 50% of Amazon’s shipments reach net zero carbon by 2030, with an eventual goal of net zero carbon emissions for all its deliveries.

By consolidating deliveries, the new delivery option could also give Amazon a way to help lessen its escalating shipping costs, which have been rising as more and more people sign up for Prime and take advantage of its two-day shipping. In its most recent fourth quarter, Amazon’s shipping costs rose 23% to $9 billion.

“From Amazon’s perspective, while this move is admirable in potentially reducing the company’s carbon footprint, this move is also about reducing shipping costs,” commented Danielle Roberts, senior product manager at omnichannel commerce platform Kibo. “It’s common knowledge that Amazon loses money on two-day shipping, yet they’re willing to take that loss to win market share and drive out competition. However, eventually Amazon will need an exit strategy from this exponential growth strategy and toward profitability. If this Amazon Day model catches on with enough customers, it could make a big step in that direction…Amazon is making a bet that a significant number of their shoppers will find this service more convenient than two-day shipping.”

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