Amazon.com Inc said on Monday it would offer free shipping with no purchase minimum for the first time this holiday season, heating up the competition with rivals.
Until now, customers outside Amazon’s loyalty club Prime had to reach the $25 minimum in order to enjoy free shipping. With the new U.S.-only promotion, effective from Nov. 5, all customers will get their profucts delivered for free. The deal lasts until Amazon can no longer promise items in time for Christmas with free delivery, which typically takes five to eight business days.
Amazon cut its order minimum for free shipping to $25 from $35 indefinitely in May 2017.
Amazon's move will pile pressure on Walmart and Target, which in recent years have chipped away at Amazon’s lead with their own offers of free two-day shipping. While Walmart has maintained its $35 order threshold this holiday, Target has scrapped its minimum until Dec. 22.
Just over half of all U.S. households have a Prime subscription, analysts estimate. Prime remains the cornerstone of Amazon’s business because shoppers buy more from the retailer once they pay $119 for the year-long membership. Perks include same-day shipping and video streaming.