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Prime membership surges as Amazon targets US welfare recipients

A CONSUMER Intelligence Research Partners (CIRP) survey of 500 Amazon.com customers found that the e-commerce giant now has 80 million Amazon Prime customers in the US, up 37.9 per cent year on year.

With Amazon's July 11 Prime Day sales promotion, the company expects to make gains in the next few days, even among welfare recipients. 

This dove tails with Amazon's earlier announcement that it was making its Prime membership programme more affordable to customers on welfare and food stamps. 

Prime Day is only available to subscribers, and has been extended to 30 hours this time to draw in more customers. 

CIRP found a 26 per cent rise in Prime members that subscribe on monthly basis, up from 21 per cent in the previous quarter, reports New York's Air Cargo World. 

CIRP said that those users are where Amazon gets its full-time subscribers. With more US consumers flirting with the idea of full time subscription, Amazon hopes an increase in that high spending demographic that spends US$1,300 per year.

As only 20 per cent of Americans bank more than six-figures per year, that means Amazon must be moving into tranches of low income earners, said CIRP. 

This suggests that the e-commerce company is succeeding in making Prime membership a successful alternative to weekly grocery shopping, rather than an upper-income-specific habit, said CIRP.

Customers with valid Electronic Benefits Transfer (EBT) cards now qualify for a discounted membership of $5.99 per month.
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