Lindsey Wasson | Reuters
An employee is working on order picking from Amazon Fulfillment Center inventory in Kent, Washington, October 24, 2018.
Amazon.com said Monday it would offer free shipping with no minimum order value for the first time this holiday season, fueling competition with Walmart and other competitors struggling for consumer Christmas shopping.
The US-only action, effective November 5, will waive the minimum of $ 25 that customers outside of Amazon's loyalty club Prime will have to pay for free shipping. The deal lasts until Amazon can promise no more articles for Christmas. Delivery usually takes place within five to eight business days.
The announcement could help Amazon maintain its rapid revenue growth. Shares of the world's largest online retailer were hammered last month, with at least the beginning of 2016 forecasting the lowest sales increase. The current quarter is usually the largest of Amazon.
Amazon has set the minimum order for free shipping at $ 25 from $ 35 in May 2017 indefinitely.
Monday's news will put pressure on Walmart and Target, who have cut Amazon's lead over the past few years with their own free two-day shipping offer. While Walmart has kept its $ 35 order limit this holiday, Target has suspended its minimum until December 22nd.
Just over half of all households in the US have a prime subscription, analysts estimate. Prime continues to be the cornerstone of Amazon, with shoppers buying more from retailers paying $ 119 for their annual membership. Benefits include same day shipping and video streaming.
Amazon is now hoping for those outside of the club and hopes that his brand and wider choice will take him away. Free shipping can apply to hundreds of millions of Amazon items, compared to hundreds of thousands on Target. Target, however, promises to deliver the items faster.
It was unclear how free delivery of small ticket items would affect Amazon's net income, leading to improvements in efficiency over the last month.
According to Seattle's most recent annual application, shipping costs nearly doubled between 2015 and 2017, reaching $ 21.7 billion.