Amazon launches same-day delivery service in the UK
Amazon has launched its first same-day delivery service in the United Kingdom, so customers can now order online in the morning and pick up their goods the same afternoon. If a British consumers orders something before 11.45am, he can collect the items at one of 500 locations across the country from 4pm the same day.
Users will also be able to order by 7.45pm to pick up their items from 6.30am the following day. It’s a free service for members of Amazon Prime (a premium service costing €88 per year) and will cost €6.25 per delivery for non-members.
Online shoppers can pick up the items they ordered at Amazon at newsagents and convenience shops, but also at the lockers Amazon has been installing at e.g. Tube and train stations. The ability to let customers pick up their orders at newsagents and convenience stores (which will carry ‘Pass my Parcel’ branding to highlight the service to customers) is the result of a collaboration between Amazon and newspaper distributor Smiths News.
Fast delivery and pick up whenever you want
“This is our fastest pick-up service yet,” said Christopher North, Managing Director of Amazon.co.uk. “We know that Prime customers love fast delivery and the convenience to pick up their order at a time and place that suits them best. This new service brings together both of those great benefits.”
Together with the same-day delivery service, the number of pick-up locations from Amazon in the UK has also expanded significantly. Back in June of this year, there were about 300 locations across the country and now there about 500 of such locations.
Accurate picking and same-day delivery important to gain customer’s trust
Jonathan Bellwood, CEO of warehouse management specialist Peoplevox, tells us that Amazon’s new offering shouldn’t come as a surprise. “Provided that ecommerce companies can make the transport available, this is a very achievable new way to sell online. The 11.45am cutoff that Amazon has set is a very shrewd time – being the size that they are – as they have multiple distribution centers to choose from and can pretty much guarantee that a product can get to a collection point in around 4 hours.”
He adds: “There’s no reason that other ecommerce companies, even without Amazon’s financial and logistical might, can achieve the same turnaround. Ecommerce companies need to optimize their picking methods in speed and accuracy in order to capitalize on same-day pick-up services. For many, this will require a back-end overhaul with a system which guarantees you know what stock you have and where. Even with same-day delivery many customers will not buy again if they are sent the wrong item, so accurate picking combined with same-day delivery pick-up services is a sure way to gain trust with customers and prove reliability. The ability to prioritize which orders are picked and when will be critical.”
According to Benjamin Teszner, CEO of ecommerce solution PrestaShop, Amazon’s announcement puts more pressure on smaller ecommerce stores to step up their delivery game to meet rising customer expectations. “Getting delivery right should be a priority for all size businesses, especially in the run up to Christmas when shipping can often be the differentiating factor for customers choosing gifts between multiple stores”, he says. Adding: “For ecommerce site owners, tactics such as offering a reduced number of delivery options (e.g. standard shipping or next day delivery) can simplify the process for the store and the shopper. Also, pre-packing items identified as potential bestsellers will mitigate the risk of being overwhelmed and failing to get things out the door during the festive rush.”