Amazon’s plans to take on UPS and FedEx are reportedly coming to fruition. According to a report by The Wall Street Journal, the online retailer’s new shipping service, named “Shipping with Amazon” (SWA), will roll out in Los Angeles in the coming weeks. With SWA, Amazon will pick up packages from businesses and ship them to customers, relying almost entirely on Amazon’s shipping infrastructure.
Aside from first starting in LA, SWA will first serve third-party merchants that already sell on Amazon. The company plans to send drivers to pick up shipments from these businesses and deliver the packages for them. While shipping and delivery will mostly go through Amazon, anything outside of the retailer’s reach will be given to the USPS and other shipping services for the “last mile” portion of the delivery.
In the future, Amazon reportedly wants to open up SWA to businesses that aren’t affiliated with the site—meaning Amazon could ship and deliver packages from companies of all sizes. Amazon also believes it can compete with UPS and FedEx by making SWA more affordable for business customers, but its pricing structure hasn’t been revealed.
News of this particular shipping endeavor broke in 2016, when Amazon was reportedly still in the planning stages. But SWA is just one of Amazon’s shipping projects, all of which give Amazon more control over packages sold through its website. Amazon has cargo planes, ocean freights, lockers stationed in businesses and in apartment complexes to store packages, and even smart home devices that let couriers into homes to make deliveries.
Amazon has been slowly building out its shipping and delivery infrastructure, and it seems the company is ready to extend those services to other businesses. However, it will likely take a while before Amazon can fully service businesses—both those that do and do not sell on Amazon—with SWA.
SOURCE: Ars Technica – Valentina Palladino