It’s no secret that Amazon would love for more people to use it Prime subscription service. Amazon Prime’s hallmark feature is free two-day shipping, but over the years, additional perks have been added including music and video streaming, unlimited cloud storage, free eBooks and discounted new release video games (among other things).
In what can be seen as yet another push to get customers to sign up for Prime, which costs $99 per year, Amazon has raised the free shipping minimum for non-Prime orders to $49. This is a $14 bump from the outgoing $35 free shipping minimum that was introduced in 2013. Before that increase, the free shipping minimum stood at $25 for over a decade.
For anyone taking a look at Amazon’s Q4 2015 earnings report, it’s easy to see why Amazon made this move. The company’s bottom line was eroded significantly by shipping and delivery costs, so the company has to make it up somewhere — making people spend more to get free shipping is an obvious vector, with Amazon Prime subscriptions being the other.
While this is definitely disappointing news for those looking for a low-impact path to free shipping, you can still get free shipping if you have at least $25 worth of books in your order (which is an obvious nod to Amazon’s origins as an online bookstore).