There wasn’t any press release from Amazon about it, but suddenly, the minimum order that qualifies for free shipping is now $35, up from $25. The timing is obviously chosen for the Christmas season. I’ll bet that Amazon is hoping that by the time the Christmas rush is over, folks won’t remember that the minimum for free shipping used to be ten dollars less.
Or maybe they are hoping that more people will sign up for Amazon Prime. We signed up for Prime some time ago, simply because we buy enough stuff from Amazon to make it a really good deal, but the occasional buyer might not come out ahead. However, with the new minimum, that might push the borderline buyer over the threshold.
One side-effect of the new change that Mrs. Amazopia noticed is that some 3rd-party sellers who had Amazon listings close to $35 have quickly raised their prices to be at or just over $35. Hmmm…(note from Mrs. Amazopia: And this is unexpected – HOW? Keep in mind that Amazon earns a commission on every sale…the larger the sale, the larger the commission.)
In other news, Amazon announced their 3rd-quarter results today. Sales were up 24% from last year. One of the interesting items in the press release was that Prime subscriptions were up substantially. Could be that somebody in Amazon’s accounting department noticed that the trend was enhancing their bottom line, which might partially explain the increase in the new non-Prime free shipping minimum.
Haven’t seen much from that guy with the outdated blog theme lately. Maybe that’s because if you had followed his advice on Amazon stock over the last couple of years, you would have lost a lot of money.
Amazon just opened up a new fulfillment center in Baltimore. In the press release, they say they’ve created 1,000 new jobs in the Baltimore area. I haven’t yet seen the naysayers claiming that this new fulfillment center actually destroyed jobs, but I’m sure they will chime in soon.