While Amazon is being blamed for costing the jobs of 100,000 and more retail store workers over the last several months, they are now offering an amazing benefit for many of those out-of-work and the poor. According to UPI, customers on government assistance and have an Electronic Benefits Transfer (EBT) card can receive a half-price discount on Amazon Prime subscriptions. This offer effects 20 percent of the U.S, Population. Is it a real deal?
Amazon is not only the wave of the future it is the reality of the here and now and the Amazon Prime benefits have made the burden of being low income and on food stamps just a little more bearable.
When one accounts for a growing number of food necessities as well as other low-cost items are being made as online purchases, the monthly a 45.5 percent discount, plus free two-day shipping on the majority of Amazon orders can be a real savings. The unlimited free streaming of Amazon videos and music content is an added bonus.
Is this some altruistic gesture on the part of Amazon? The facts of where the billions of low income customer sales are going warrants the online mega giant to tap into that market share. Consider the fact that according to the Wall Street Journal in 2016 Walmart, generated about $13 billion in sales last year from shoppers using Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program, and Women, Infant and Children Nutrition Program or SNAP.
Amazon vice president of Amazon Prime admitted as much in a release. He stressed, “We designed this membership option for customers receiving government assistance to make our everyday selection and savings more accessible, including the many conveniences and entertainment benefits of Prime.”
Now consider that among the 44 plus million SNAP recipients in the United States, close to 18 percent of their purchases are scooped up by Walmart.
That is quite a large chunk of change in the billions. So, if Amazon can lock down some of that cash, it will be able to seriously compete with the discount sales merchandise giant for the coveted customer base.