Sunday, August 19News That Matters

Amazon Prime members to get new discounts at Whole Foods


Amazon is dishing out more perks to Prime members who shop at Whole Foods. The company announced two new Prime benefits that shoppers can take advantage of in Whole Foods stores: an additional 10 percent off sale items and “deep discounts” on select bestselling items. The perks roll out across all Florida stores today and will reach all Whole Foods locations in the US this summer.

Those deep discounts will cover a variety of items, including meat and fish. Whole Foods highlighted some of the first items to get big discounts through the new program: organic strawberries, wild-caught halibut, Kind granola, and cold-brew coffee at Allegro coffee bars. According to a Wall Street Journal report, the additional 10 percent off sale items could apply to thousands of items in each store.

It appears the discounts apply to in-store purchases only (the sale items with the additional 10-percent discount will be marked with big yellow signs). Customers must download the Whole Foods mobile app, sign in with their Amazon account, and scan the Prime Code at checkout to receive the special Prime-member discounts.

The new savings come in the wake of Amazon raising the annual price of a Prime membership by 20 percent, from $99 to $119. While Amazon continuously adds perks to Prime to attract new customers, these grocery benefits are a nudge to Whole Foods customers who haven’t bought into Prime yet. It’s possible that the Prime price increase may deter some new customers from signing up, but Amazon is likely hoping that it can convince Whole Foods diehards by giving them another reason to go Prime.

Ever since Amazon bought Whole Foods last year for $13.7 billion, the company has been cutting some prices and adding benefits for grocery shoppers who have Prime. Some Whole Foods locations support one- and two-hour grocery delivery windows, many stores have newly installed Amazon lockers for easy package pickup and drop-off, and Amazon Prime Rewards Visa customers get 5 percent cash back on all Whole Foods purchases.

But the continuous flow of new Prime perks has its pros and cons. Undoubtedly, many of the current 100 million Prime members enjoy getting more from their membership whenever Amazon adds a new benefit to the program. However, Amazon cited its growing costs of delivering Prime benefits to customers as the reason for the most recent price hike. Over the years, Amazon has expanded Prime to include two-day shipping, same-day delivery with Prime Now, new in-car delivery, access to Prime Video shows and movies, ad-free Twitch access, and more.

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