Amazon is now raising the minimum for free shipping to $35 in certain markets for non-Prime members as part of its efforts to explore additional cost-saving measures, according to updates on its website.
Until now, customers needed to make a minimum purchase of $25 to be eligible for free shipping. Nonetheless, this change will not impact Prime subscribers, who pay an annual fee of $139 for free shipping and additional benefits.
“We continually evaluate our offerings and make adjustments based on those assessments,” said Amazon’s Public Relations Manager Kristina Pressentin. “Prime members continue to enjoy free delivery on over 300 million items, with tens of millions of items available for free same or one-day delivery.”
In response to decelerating sales and an uncertain economic landscape, Amazon’s CEO, Andy Jassy, initiated a comprehensive assessment of the company’s expenditures earlier this year. This evaluation led to a series of measures, including a reduction of 27,000 positions, a halt in corporate recruitment, and the suspension or discontinuation of several experimental initiatives.
Furthermore, Amazon introduced shipping fees for Fresh grocery orders below $150 and established charges for specific returns processed at UPS stores.
Increasing the minimum requirement for free shipping might incentivize more shoppers to enroll in the Prime membership program, which offers benefits like complimentary two-day delivery, access to OTT and music streaming services, and various other advantages.
As of 2021, Amazon reported over 200 million Prime subscribers worldwide. The company’s subscription services, encompassing Prime memberships, contributed approximately $9.9 billion in revenue, as indicated by Amazon’s most recent quarterly financial report.
In the past, Amazon has modified the free shipping criteria for non-Prime members. Specifically, in 2016, the minimum was raised from $35 to $49, but it was later reverted back to the original threshold after a year. Eventually, Amazon decreased the minimum to $25 as part of its efforts to compete with Walmart’s offerings.