I order a lot of items from Amazon. I’d say I order most of what I purchase from Amazon, with the exception of groceries and daily staple products, like toilet paper, paper towels, peanut butter, and other things I can usually consume quickly and/or need on short notice. When I used to run the numbers on “Subscribe and save” items, (Amazon’s recurring subscription to items, that are sold at a discount, when you agree to receive them on a regular timetable) it never worked out for me, and I wanted better “Just in time” management, without feeling I needed to rush using something, before a replacement arrived. Amazon Prime Now, seems to have improved upon that model. I was perfectly happy, with schlepping paper towels and groceries home from my local pharmacy chain store, and my supermarket, Amazon Prime now makes a compelling case to stop doing that. When I’ve talked to my neighbors in my Brooklyn apartment building, they all agree, that they’d totally be willing to pay a reasonable dollar amount for “on-demand” convenience. Their wait might be over. Amazon Prime Now provides a 2 hour delivery window on a number of different products, and allows you to use your existing Amazon delivery addresses and credit card information, to make it simple to click your way to the check out.
When I noticed they were offering $10 off your first order, I thought I’d give a try. One Sunday night at about 6 p.m. I had my wife review the “Weekly ad” section of Prime Now, which has items that are discounted and very comparable to my corner chain pharmacy and/or supermarket. These items, and other sections of Prime Now, include refrigerated items too.
Jif Peanut butter at $2.49, 6 ounces of Blueberries $3. The items pretty much included most of the stuff that I normally would NOT buy on Amazon.
There is a minimum of $20 per order, and at the final checkout, the exit page, includes a line for a tip, which was automatically filled in with $5. It does let you adjust this amount though, and advises that no cash is needed during the delivery and that the driver will receive 100% of the tip amount. I clicked “Complete order” and selected a delivery window of between 8 p.m. and 10 p.m. on a Sunday night and about 2 hours later, my doorbell rang with 2 small bags and he simply handed them to me, and thanked me.
I’ve also used Amazon Fresh, in the past, which pulls their own groceries, from Amazon’s own distribution centers. I believe the products coming from Amazon Prime Now are coming from locally sourced stores. This service, coupled with Amazon’s regular “Same day delivery” on other products (which I’ve also used, and has a threshold of $35 as the minimum order and does not request a tip) is really a game changer for customers within the available delivery areas. Now I understand why Amazon has been advertising for drivers on my local news radio channel. This new service makes it affordable to outsource the task of shopping for grocery staples, at a cost that is reasonable, when spread across even a small order. When the drones do finally show up, Amazon’s dominance of “the last mile” for deliveries will be complete.