Amazon brings Prime power to other websites

Source: Amazon “Buy with Prime” promotional video
Apr 22, 2022

Amazon Prime members who have wished that their perks would extend to e-commerce experiences beyond Amazon’s website are now in luck.

On Thursday, Amazon announced the launch of its Buy With Prime functionality, which will allow retailers that sell on Amazon’s third-party marketplace to implement Amazon Prime on their own websites. Customers shopping merchant websites with the Prime logo will be able to take advantage of free delivery and free returns, check out using their Amazon Prime payment and shipping information, and receive shipping details as if shopping through Amazon Prime.

Jamil Ghani, VP of Amazon Prime, said in a press release, “Members will have the flexibility to shop from merchants directly, all while enjoying the fast, free delivery, seamless checkout, and easy returns they’ve come to know and love from Amazon.”

To begin, Buy With Prime will be available to merchants using the Fulfilled By Amazon service on an invite-only basis.

Peter Larsen, VP of Buy with Prime, said, “With shoppers purchasing directly from merchants’ online stores, Buy with Prime will allow merchants to build customer relationships and brand loyalty while offering conversion-driving benefits like fast, free shipping.”

Amazon’s expanding logistics’ infrastructure has long been seen as a threat to major carriers like UPS, FedEx and USPS, but many regard the move as a shot against Shopify. An analysis from Simply Wall Street News reported on Yahoo! Finance sees Amazon’s move as possibly inducing individual merchants to switch their fulfillment, if not their entire operations, to Amazon.

Recently, some large Amazon Marketplace sellers, like Packable and Anker, have built enough success on the Amazon platform to become publicly traded companies in their own right.

But the idea of Amazon Prime having such an active hand in retailers’ non-Amazon, direct-to-consumer websites raises perennial questions about the risks to third parties of relying too heavily on Amazon. Critics have accused Amazon of knocking off third-party seller products and manipulating search results to prioritize Amazon private brands, although Amazon has long denied the charges.

DISCUSSION QUESTIONS: Do you see Amazon’s new Buy With Prime service providing the right kind of benefits to merchants and holding strong appeal to consumers? Does the move hold risks for Amazon?

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"Wow! This is the Holy Grail of aggregated retail! It’s truly vendor stalls under one roof now, seamless for shoppers."

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14 Comments on "Amazon brings Prime power to other websites"

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Neil Saunders

With growth from its core retail business slowing, Amazon is looking for new ways to bolster revenue. Buy With Prime is one of the initiatives it hopes will provide a new avenue for success. There are multiple benefits: higher service revenue from new companies it partners with, better economics for its logistics division, more consumer insight, and enhanced value of Prime which should aid retention and justify price increases. The downsides? If this becomes extensive it could pull people away from Amazon’s own marketplace, albeit to a small extent. It may also increase scrutiny around how Amazon gathers and uses data from the retailers it supports.

Paula Rosenblum

Great for Amazon, good for the consumer, and for the participating retailers, short term gain for long term pain.

Dave Bruno

Once again, as is so often the case with Amazon, beware of letting the fox in the henhouse. The clear and tangible short-term benefits of “Buying With Prime” come with significant long-term risks…

Liz Crawford

Wow! This is the Holy Grail of aggregated retail! It’s truly vendor stalls under one roof now, seamless for shoppers. Will it be successful? Heck yes. Watch out, Amazon will take over the world now.

Brian Delp
7 months 8 days ago

Amazon has been offering “Amazon Pay” for some time, however this expansion and marketing to outside merchant sites specifically seems like an effort to capitalize on its brand clout. Merchants now have the ability to promote an alliance with Amazon to leverage consumer confidence in shipping speed and efficiency for their own sites. It seems more like a strategy to overlap with Shopify efforts, who likely powers the majority of those outside websites. I don’t see any downsides, only brand building potential.

Gene Detroyer

Yes, “clout” is what marketing is all about.

David Naumann

From a consumer perspective, the Buy With Prime service is an added value to their Prime membership and will help Amazon retain members. From a merchant perspective, it may attract more consumers and thus more revenues. However as others have pointed out, the merchant benefits come with potential risks of letting your competitor have access to your customer data. It is a double-edged sword.

Ananda Chakravarty

Amazon attempts to pull itself into other retailers’ online traffic, as traffic grows. Limited risk to Amazon, but huge risk for brand name retailers. This offers DTC for brands but at the cost of losing the customer channel. Moreover this enhances the media play for Amazon. Consumers and Amazon will benefit the most. Smaller retailers will jump on for the Prime branding. Larger ones will consider why handing over their media stream and online traffic to Amazon makes any sense at all.

Gene Detroyer

What do we say in retail? Location, location, location. Today that is what Amazon is all about for third-party retailers. Amazon has built a brand based on speed and convenience and is now making it available to a wide variety of online retailers. It sounds like a big win for all.

Lisa Goller

Consumers and merchants win big with Buy With Prime.

Consumers gain superior speed, variety and reliability, making Prime membership even more satisfying. Amazon’s already getting to our doorsteps; it may as well bring B2B partners’ goods, too.

Riding Amazon’s logistics rails extends merchants’ reach. Buy With Prime makes more of the mall mobile, as DTC merchants get their products in our hands faster.

Mohamed Amer, PhD

Amazon’s retail success is due to the seemingly infinite range and depth of the available products and the brand’s high level of trust. Bringing Prime power to merchants’ websites further cements the merchants’ relationship with and dependence on Amazon. Another brilliant strategic move by the company ironically combines the retailing giant with the “mom and pops” of e-commerce.

Jeff Sward

This is a big deal — for everybody, for all parties concerned. Logistics-as-a-Service. LaaS. There will be of course some concerns about the data mining aspect of this move, but life just got better for a whole bunch of Amazon sellers and their customers. And Amazon tightens their grip even more on those sellers.

James Tenser

It goes beyond data-mining, I think, as this also could also broaden Amazon’s Retail Media base by accessing more shopping interactions. Prime is above all an audience aggregation machine.

Yes it will certainly add to the scale economies of Amazon’s local delivery network, by sending out fuller vans.

I am less clear about how shoppers will find their way directly to tens of thousands of Prime-affiliated online sellers if they do not begin by searching on Perhaps this is a gambit to capture transactions that begin on other marketplaces?

Kai Clarke

This is just another way for Amazon to expand and flex its fulfillment and logistics programs while appealing to a broader number of retailers. For Amazon, this is one more arrow in their retail quiver which other retailers can use.

"Wow! This is the Holy Grail of aggregated retail! It’s truly vendor stalls under one roof now, seamless for shoppers."

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