Amazon is testing a program that has its contracted Flex drivers pick up and deliver packages from malls, as first reported by Bloomberg. The program, which Bloomberg says Amazon has been running since last year, it could help Amazon fulfill orders for same-day or two-day delivery.
“This is just another way we can connect Amazon sellers with customers through convenient delivery options,” Amazon spokeswoman Lauren Samaha said in a statement emailed to The edge. Samaha added that only a handful of vendors participate in the program, but did not specify which ones.
It’s also not entirely clear where Amazon is running the test. drivers who spoke Bloomberg About the program they quote to pick up packages from shopping centers located in Chandler, Arizona, Las Vegas, Nevada and Tysons Corner, Virginia.
Like Instacart or DoorDash drivers, Amazon Flex drivers use their own vehicles to deliver packages. They typically pick up packages at Amazon delivery stations, but there is also the option to pick up packages at local stores, which Samaha says has been available for years. Mall deliveries will work the same way, only drivers will head to stores inside local malls to pick up packages.
Earlier this month, vox reported that Amazon has been quietly testing a delivery service that pays rural mom-and-pop stores to deliver packages for the company. In a way, local businesses become a kind of post office: Packages are dropped off 360 days a year, and workers are tasked with delivering them within a 10-mile radius. Amazon previously relied on the US Postal Service and UPS for the final leg of deliveries, where packages actually arrive at customers’ doors, but giving local stores that job could lessen the need to get involved. any of the services.
The retail giant is also looking to conquer other shipping services on third-party websites. In April, Amazon began allowing merchants who already stock products in the Amazon warehouse add “Shop with Prime” buttons to your websites. This allows customers to get the benefits of Prime shipping when shopping outside of Amazon, and also gives Amazon’s growing fulfillment sector even more business.