Amazon’s huge hub
A $1.49 billion air services hub will be built at Cincinnati/Kentucky International Airport. Amazon announced its plans for the major hub on Tuesday. The project will take up over 900 acres of land from the airport and has a 50-year lease. More than 2,000 jobs will be created as a result of this expansion, however there has yet to be confirmation on when construction will begin. The hub, when completed, will be Amazon’s largest with an estimated 200 take off, and landings undertaken daily. This shows Amazon’s desire to further expand its competitive advantages in this specific area of logistics against similar companies such as UPS and FedEx.
The air services hub promises to revolutionize the worldwide fulfillment industry by investing in this long-term project rather than several smaller ones. Location is a key feature in this deal – Deutsche Post DHL is in close proximity to the site for Amazon to utilize its services and improve its overseas delivery service. As well as this, Amazon’s trucks can easily reach its other 11 fulfillment centers, which are located nearby within the state.
Read more on Amazon’s plans here.
Starbucks goes with the voice
Conversational commerce is the new focus of Starbucks. This week, it released plans to introduce voice-driven ordering and payment to its customers. The ordering will take place through the My Starbucks Barista artificial intelligence feature on its already established App. The service will only be available to a limited amount of Apple customers throughout the U.S.A, with plans to expand its beta testing to Google android users later in 2017. In relation to this, Starbucks is also enabling a re-ordering feature through Amazon’s Alexa marketplace, which will launch in just a few short weeks. The customer can designate their ‘usual order’ in advance and order from one of the 10 stores they have visited recently.
This is yet another expansion of Starbucks’ services, and supports their 5-year plan of improving customer service with focus on the uprising trend of conversational commerce. The plan is to find new ways of refining order efficiency and further encouraging customer loyalty. Starbucks’ goal is to continue to create a personal connection with its customers, which reflects its in-store values, through voice-driven ordering.
Find out more information on Starbucks’ new service here.
No subscription needed
ShippingPass, Walmart’s exclusive shipping service, has been abandoned this week for a simpler alternative. It was introduced just two years ago as a rival to Amazon’s Prime program. The service offered free two-day shipping for $49 per year compared to Amazon’s equivalent at $99 per year. Over the past two years, Walmart’s delivery services have improved due to many investments in e-commerce and the testing of its logistical capabilities through the implementation of the program. Due to this improvement, Walmart now feels comfortable in guaranteeing two-day delivery on its products.
The new alternative offers free two-day shipping on over two million of its products on Walmart.com, and that is without a membership subscription. Everyday items such as shelf-stable food, household cleaning supplies and diapers will be included in the aforementioned strategy. In addition, it will lower its minimum purchase required for free shipping from $50 to $35. Through these changes, Walmart hopes to entice customers who regularly use these products to switch to its services and to build brand loyalty through its quicker and cheaper delivery service.
To read more on Walmart’s change in service, click here.
Hope you have a great weekend!