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Amazon Gives Shoppers Another Reason to Use Prime Shipping

Access to Amazon Prime shoppers is a strong incentive for sellers to use the Fulfillment By Amazon service. And the more popular Prime becomes, the more enticing FBA may be for online merchants.

Now Amazon is giving shoppers another reason to sign up for its Prime program – early access to Amazon Lightning Deals and MyHabit.com. Here’s the message non-Prime members began seeing on Amazon on Monday:

Get Early Access: Shop Amazon Lightning Deals and MyHabit.com.
Consider yourself a techy, the best-styled fashionista on the block, or just an everyday savvy shopper? There are two ways for you to be among the first to decide what’s hot and what’s not. Get 30-minute early access to select Lightning Deals on Amazon, and shop new events on MyHabit.com 30 minutes before other customers can access these designer deals.

One shopper who was already a member of Amazon Prime noticed something different when she went to the Deals site on Monday. “This morning I noticed some of the lightning deals have this phrase underneath the time: Prime Early Access Deal. The time countdowns begin with “Starts for you in…” Whoa. This could make the upcoming holiday deals a little more interesting, as if they weren’t already crazy enough. I’m cool with this. :)”

But some shoppers said they believed early access to deals for Prime members could alienate non-Prime members.

Amazon recently increased the annual membership program from $79/year to $99/year. It gives members unlimited Free Two-Day Shipping on more than 20 million items across all categories; unlimited streaming of tens of thousands of movies and TV episodes with Prime Instant Video; one million songs and hundreds of playlists with Prime Music; and access to more than 500,000 books to borrow with the Kindle Owners’ Lending Library.

The news of the early-access benefit of Prime also comes as Amazon allows more third-party sellers to participate in Amazon deals, news the company announced last week (learn how to submit a Holiday deal for consideration in this article ).

The Vice President of Amazon Prime Greg Greeley said in the company’s press release, “Holiday shopping has become synonymous with deal shopping and this holiday, we’re adding new ways for customers to find special gifts for everyone on their list with savings throughout the season. With early access deals for Prime members, we are providing our most frequent shoppers with a first look at some of the best offers from Amazon and MyHabit this holiday, and all year.”

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Ina Steiner
Ina Steiner
Ina Steiner is co-founder and Editor of EcommerceBytes and has been reporting on ecommerce since 1999. She's a widely cited authority on marketplace selling and is author of "Turn eBay Data Into Dollars" (McGraw-Hill 2006). Her blog was featured in the book, "Blogging Heroes" (Wiley 2008). She is a member of the Online News Association (Sep 2005 - present) and Investigative Reporters and Editors (Mar 2006 - present). Follow her on Twitter at @ecommercebytes and send news tips to ina@ecommercebytes.com. See disclosure at EcommerceBytes.com/disclosure/.