When we launched Prime in the UK in 2007, the first benefit we offered members was One-Day Delivery, which revolutionised the way many people shop online.
Today, Prime is even faster. Millions of the most popular items are now available to members with free Same-Day or One-Day Delivery.
Last year in the UK, we delivered our fastest order within 75 minutes, and more than 70% of Prime member orders made over the festive season arrived on the same or next day.
Last year, in the UK, we delivered our fastest order within 75 minutes.
Prime has grown over the years to include savings, convenience, and entertainment all in a single membership. Members enjoy exclusive deals and shopping events like Prime Day, as well as benefits like Prime Video and Amazon Music, and great savings on offers with Odeon, Deliveroo and HelloFresh.
But we won’t stop there.
Here’s how we achieved our most efficient delivery service on our selection, and are working to improve in 2024 and beyond:
Leveraging AI and technology to place products closer to customers
With the help of AI, we’re able to expand the selection of products that we keep as close as possible to customers, stocking more everyday essentials that our customers order and re-order consistently (think kitchen roll or dog food, for example). This means more customers can get the items they want most frequently even faster. As part of this, we’re evolving how products come into our fulfilment centres from vendors and our selling partners.
In 2023, we spent a lot of time making sure the products that leave our buildings get out faster and more efficiently. This year, we’re making sure the same is true for the products we receive. The goal is for our operations teams to have a better sense of what inventory - and how much of it - is coming in, which will allow them to align that inventory to what customers in that particular region want and need, helping to make our whole process more efficient. In Europe, we shortened the average distance each package traveled within our middle mile network by 25 kilometers in 2023 compared to 2022.
Investment in automation
We have invested €215 billion in our businesses across Europe since 2010, and now employs more than 220,000 people and operates more than 350 logistics sites. This investment includes the development of new technologies to support employees in their roles, improving safety at work and providing customers with fast and reliable delivery. In the first three years since we formed the European Advanced Technology team in 2019, based at Amazon’s Innovation Lab in Vercelli, Italy, more than 550 new pieces of technology were introduced in European fulfilment centres as part of an investment of more than €400 million.
Improving our Same-Day Delivery capabilities
Fast, free delivery is the foundation on which we built Prime. In 2014, we introduced a Same-Day Delivery service in Europe, enabling customers to shop for their last-minute ‘need-it-now’ occasions. This means that products are conveniently delivered to customers doors in as fast as a few hours and with a less than 24 hours promise. In 2024, we will continue investing for our customers, expanding the service and accelerating Same-Day Delivery speeds.
Developing more sustainable deliveries
We have thousands of electric delivery vans on the road across Europe, including more than 1,000 electric delivery vans in the UK and six micromobility hubs in four locations (London, Manchester, Croydon, and Glasgow), while all delivery bags, envelopes, and boxes across Europe are 100% recyclable.
Delivering our first package via Prime Air drone
The newest Prime Air drone, the MK30, has been unveiled as part of the latest expansion to the Prime Air programme, and it’s unlike any other drone being used for package delivery. The drones will be deployed in soon-to-be-revealed destinations in the UK and Italy.
We are delivering faster speeds on a wide selection while also improving the overall safety of our employees. Delivering packages faster isn’t a matter of moving faster within our facilities—it’s being smarter about our structure and product placement. We’ll continue to make our workplaces safer, even as we get faster.
In the UK, more than 70% of Prime member orders made over the festive season arrived on the same or next day.
What was true when Amazon was founded remains true today: customers want wide selection, low prices, and fast delivery. We’re expanding selection and delivering faster than ever. And we’re committed to keeping investing and inventing to deliver on those core customer values.
“Many years ago, I remember Jeff Bezos talking about the difference between a leader and a caretaker,” said Doug Herrington, CEO Worldwide Amazon Stores. “Put simply, he said, a leader is going to keep pushing to make something better, instead of maintaining the status quo. A leader is going to try new, innovative ideas, even though they’re challenging or time consuming or seem confusing at first. This is very much how I think about what Amazon is doing right now with speed. We’re immensely proud of our progress so far, but we know there’s more we can do. Our work on delivery speeds is global, multi-year effort, and we know has massive runway for us to continue delivering ever faster for customers.”