Amazon is expanding its network of dedicated pickup counters to three new retail chains.
The Counter service, which is available to all Amazon customers at no extra cost, provides the option of picking up Amazon packages in-store at a retail partner location. Initially launched in the U.S. in June in partnership with Rite Aid, Amazon is now rolling out the service in GNC, Health Mart and Stage Stores.
The company has been testing Counter with the three retailers for the last few months. Since its U.S. launch in June 2019, Counter has brought in tens of thousands of Amazon customers to partner locations, with Thursday being the most popular day to pick up packages. (Counter is part of Amazon Hub, which includes the Locker, Locker+, and Apartment Locker services.
“We began piloting the Amazon Hub Counter service a few months ago and are thrilled with the early results,” said Michael Glazer, CEO, Stage Stores. “This delivery option is a great way to welcome new guests to the Stage family of stores. Our friendly store associates provide a personal touch during the package pickup process and we are already seeing these new guests return to our stores.”
Delivery to a Counter location is available for all items sold on Amazon.com, and works with same-day, one-day, two-day and standard shipping. Amazon designed and built the technology for Counter from the ground-up, originally launching the service in the U.K. with apparel retailer Next and in Italy with Giunti Al Punto Librerie, Fermopoint and SisalPay stores. The service has been positively received, driving strong customer engagement and additional foot traffic for partners, Amazon said.
Here’s how Counter works: When checking out on Amazon, customers can select one of the Counter pickup points available in their ZIP code as their delivery location. Once the order arrives at the designated store, customers receive an e-mail with a unique barcode. At the store, customers provide the barcode to store staff, who scan it and retrieve the package. Customers have 14 days to collect their package.
According to Amazon, many retailers, convenience stores, and small businesses have expressed interest in becoming a Counter partner and Amazon plans to continue expanding this network. More details are available at amazon.com/hostacounter.
“The response we’ve heard from our customers and partners after the launch of Counter earlier this year has been tremendous,” said Patrick Supanc, worldwide director of Amazon Hub. “This new network of pickup points gives customers a pickup experience that is fast, flexible and convenient, and partners are thrilled with the strong engagement and additional foot traffic Counter is driving for their stores.”