Excerpt: Nevertheless, Joe Migliozzi, who leads the Shop+ unit for WPP’s Mindshare in North America, said the “no membership” messaging can be competitive for customers who aren’t Prime members yet or for Prime members who only use the service for free shipping.
“The challenge is that Prime is a very sticky service for customers,” he said. “According to our own Mindshare research, when a customer becomes a Prime member, their ability to recall Prime benefits goes up to four different services—those are advantages beyond just free shipping. Prime customers are very aware of the ecosystem that they are now part of.”
Gary Nix, chief strategist at the consultancy The Brandarchist, said companies like Amazon continue to win on full experience delivered, which he described as a more contemporary way of thinking, while companies like Walmart and eBay stay with pricing, which is more old-fashioned. And, in the end, Nix said, the things each brand does well will likely remain the deciding factor: Walmart will continue to do well in markets where people are accustomed to frequenting brick and mortar, and eBay will remain the place to go for hard-to-find, discounted items.
And, even though Walmart offers free two-day shipping, it comes with an asterisk: Free shipping is only for orders of $35 or more to offset costs. Prime members don’t have that restriction. Which means it’s probably going to be difficult for Walmart to woo existing Prime members.
Instead, Migliozzi said, eBay and Walmart should focus on customers who just want to buy an item with few restrictions and free shipping.
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