Amazon is increasing its free shipping minimum to $35 for customers who don't have a Prime membership in some regions, the company confirmed to TechCrunch on Monday. Up until now, the free shipping minimum was $25. Amazon says it's testing the new free shipping threshold randomly by ZIP code-grouped regions and that everyone in the same region will see the same free shipping threshold. The news was first reported by CNBC.
"We continually evaluate our offerings and make adjustments based on those assessments," an Amazon spokesperson told TechCrunch in an email. "We’re currently testing a $35 minimum for non-Prime customers to qualify for free shipping. Prime members continue to enjoy free delivery on over 300 million items, with tens of millions of items available for free Same or One-Day Delivery.”
The company is looking to push more customers toward it Prime offering with this new change. The change does not impact Prime members, who pay $139 annually or $15 per month for free shipping and other membership perks.
It's worth noting that this isn't the first time that Amazon has changed its free shipping threshold, as it increased the minimum to $49 from $35 back in 2016, and then brought it back to $35 in 2017. The company later dropped the price point to $25 to undercut Walmart, which has a $35 free shipping minimum for customers who aren't subscribed to Walmart+. The new change brings Amazon in-line with Walmart's offering.
By increasing the free shipping threshold, it seems that the company is attempting to cut costs, which is something Amazon has been looking to do across its business.
Amazon cut 27,000 jobs this year and froze corporate hiring. The company also started charging delivery fees for Fresh grocery orders that are less than $150, removing a perk that gave Prime members free delivery on orders over $35. In addition, Amazon ended AmazonSmile, which was a donation program that redirects 0.5% of the cost of all eligible products toward charities.