Amazon is giving everyone free shipping on everything for the holidays

05 November, 2018, 23:04 | Author: Shannon Aguilar
  • David Paul Morris  Bloomberg  Getty Images

This year, both Walmart and Target made a decision to beat Amazon on shipping, but Amazon just responded with its own shipping offer.

Amazon says it will offer customers free shipping on orders delivered through Christmas regardless of whether they are members of the Prime membership program, a move that comes two weeks after rival Target undercut the company with its own free-shipping offer. For instance, Amazon's non-Prime free shipping program includes hundreds of millions of items, far more than Walmart's entire online selection of over 75 million.

Amazon's promotion begins on Monday and is expected to cover hundreds of millions of items on the site.

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In recent months, Amazon has extended same-day delivery from Whole Foods through Prime Now to more than 60 cities. Amazon will likely release sales numbers after the holidays, so it'll be quite interesting to see exactly how much the offer helps the company out. Amazon spent more than $7 billion on shipping in the fourth quarter a year ago, before subtracting the shipping fees it collects from customers. Shoppers who aren't Prime members will get slower shipping, which can take five to eight days. Sales in November and December - excluding automobiles, gasoline and restaurants - are expected to increase between 4.3 and 4.8 percent over 2017 for a total of $717.45 billion to $720.89 billion, according to figures from the National Retail Federation.

Just over half of all USA households have a Prime subscription, analysts estimate. The company usually sets the final date toward the end of the season. Prime remains the cornerstone of Amazon's business because shoppers buy more from the retailer once they pay $119 for the year-long membership. The best guess is that it will run through the holiday season until a week or so before Christmas-while Amazon can still guarantee delivery by the holiday.

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