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Study: Amazon Prime membership reaches new heights

Membership in Amazon Prime has exceeded an important milestone.

Although Amazon itself does not disclose specific membership numbers for its Prime service, Consumer Intelligence Research Partners (CIRP) estimates there were 101 million members in the US as of Dec. 31, 2018. CIRP based this estimate on an analysis of fourth quarter 2018 buyer shopping patterns for Amazon that revealed 62% of U.S. Amazon customers belong to Prime.

These shoppers continue to spend on average about $1,400 per year, compared to about $600 per year for non-member customers, according to CIRP data.

“Amazon grew to over 100 million U.S. Prime members in the quarter,” said Josh Lowitz, partner and co-founder of CIRP. “Membership growth has slowed, but continued steadily in the holiday quarter. U.S. membership grew 10% in the past year, slower than before, but still significant on a huge base and after years of rapid growth. Membership doubled in three years, and almost quadrupled in five years, from 26 million members in December 2013.”

CIRP analysis also indicates that as of December 2018, 58% of Prime members pay for membership annually, while 36% pay a monthly fee. Members paying a monthly fee can leave and rejoin Prime on a monthly basis, but pay more during a 12-month period than members committing to the annual fee structure.

Analysis released by Citigroup in September 2018 pointed toward an expected explosion of Amazon Prime memberships in the next decade. Citigroup predicted that Amazon Prime subscribers will more than double to 275 million by 2029, as roughly 80% of U.S. households adopt the service, CBNC reported. The increase that will contribute to more than $500 billion in Prime-related gross sales per year within the same time-frame. In addition, gross merchandise sales will hit $633 billion by 2029, according to the report.

CIRP based its findings on surveys of 500 US subjects who made a purchase at in the period from October-December 2018.
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