Amazon today announced that it would be offering one-hour delivery on a range of about 20,000 items – including, according to reports, around 50 chilled lines.
Part of Amazon’s Prime Now service, the one-hour delivery is being trialled in the Birmingham area including Lichfield, Cannock and Tamworth postcodes. It quietly launched a similar service in certain parts of London back in June.
Ordering an item within one hour will cost the shopper £6.99 if they have signed up as a member first of the £79-per-year Amazon Prime scheme.
Christopher North, MD of Amazon UK, said: “Customers in London already benefit from ultra-fast delivery with Prime Now and we are delighted to bring this innovative service to Birmingham and selected postcodes in surrounding areas only five weeks after our London launch.
“Since launching Prime Now, we’ve seen high demand on everything from essentials like bottled water, coffee and nappies to must-have products like the latest video games and devices – all available for delivery in less than 60 minutes.
“We are excited to continue delivering to customers in record-breaking time.”
According to the trade journal Retail Week, Amazon is gearing up for a full grocery service launch early next year. It is thought this will emulate Amazon Fresh, the online grocery service it has already launched in US cities like Seattle, San Francisco, Los Angeles, New York City, San Diego and Philadelphia.
Amazon Fresh is due for a full launch in the UK in February or March, a source close to the project told Retail Week.
Amazon is leasing a 257,855 sq ft site in Bardon, Leicestershire, to handle deliveries. Retail Week’s report added that some Amazon warehouses were being kitted out by Clegg Food Projects, which creates processing and distribution facilities for the food and drink industry across the globe.
About 5% of US online shoppers say they belong to Amazon Fresh.