Amazon have recently revealed they’ll be expanding Prime beyond Amazon.com. In an exciting move that will bring more benefits to Prime shoppers, FBA sellers can add ‘Buy with Prime’ to their external websites.
What is Buy with Prime?
Buy with Prime is a new checkout solution for merchants to add to their online stores. Much like Shopify, Paypal and Google Pay, customers can choose to ‘Buy with Prime’. They log in to their Amazon account, pay with the preferred card and reap the benefits of their Prime membership. These include:
- Fast, free shipping
- A seamless shopping experience
- Free returns on select items
Being able to shop outside of Amazon but still have access to the top 3 advantages of Prime makes the membership even more valuable.
Which businesses will be using Buy with Prime?
Participating merchants are yet to be announced, but currently it’s invitation only to those who use Fulfilment by Amazon (FBA). As the stock is already in the Amazon warehouses, this makes signing up really quick and simple. In fact, they say it should take a matter of minutes!
Hot on the tail of Shopify, Amazon are hoping to roll this out to a wider group over time, including to those who don’t even sell on Amazon.com. This is the first time they’ve been able to potentially target merchants outside of their own website.
Why have Amazon chosen to expand Prime?
Amazon are simply improving their competitive position. They’ve found a simple way to expand beyond the limits of their website and improve the chances of gaining more Prime members.
Some retailers, however, may be reluctant to get involved. Partnering so closely with Amazon or becoming reliant on them raises a few concerns amongst businesses. Once you’re in with the giant it can be hard to get out. Although there isn’t currently a fee for using Buy with Prime, in the past Amazon have been known to introduce extra fees without warning (cough cough). Who’s to say they won’t introduce a cost to sellers if Buy with Prime takes off.
What are the benefits for sellers?
The biggest benefit for smaller businesses is that they’ll gain access to much cheaper shipping from their own website than if they went it alone. As the inventory will be stored and shipped by Amazon, businesses will be able to keep their overheads down as well as operating a slick, smooth shipping process.
It also means Amazon have opened a window, albeit a small one, where they’re prepared to share. Sellers get access to more customer contact details and email addresses than they would perhaps have gained before. This goes two ways though. Amazon also gains access to similar data. Perhaps this smaller relationship with Amazon and the ability to have more control over it will encourage sellers to let them in. Baby steps…
With over 200 million Prime members currently active, we can’t wait to see how Buy with Prime is received when it launches later this year.