retail news in context, analysis with attitude

A week before Thanksgiving, Amazon said that it would discount prices on turkeys and other products sold at Whole Foods to its Prime members.

Amazon bought Whole Foods earlier this year for $13.7 billion, immediately instituted price cuts in select categories, and began selling Alex-based technology in Whole Foods stores, and said it would open up Amazon pop-up stores in select locations for the holidays.

According to a story from TechCrunch, “Amazon is offering a small, but powerful, example of what the savings for Prime members may look like as the discount program kicks off. In an announcement, Whole Foods says that it’s lowering prices on select organic turkeys to $3.49 per pound, and on no-antibiotic turkeys to $2.49 per pound, starting now.

“But Prime members will pay even less – they’ll only be charged $2.99 per pound and $1.99 per pound, respectively.”

In addition, prices are being cut on both private label and branded items.

According to the story, “Prime members who want to take advantage of the turkey discounts will have to print a coupon from Amazon’s website to be presented at checkout. If the customer already bought a turkey, they can return to the store for a credit, the website notes. Presumably, when the two companies’ systems are integrated, a physical coupon will no longer be required.”

Business Insider, in its story, says that the cuts are a "sneak preview" of “what it will look like when Amazon Prime is Whole Foods' official rewards program.” In addition, it said, “Whole Foods also just announced a new round of price cuts for all shoppers.”
KC's View:
A sneak peek, indeed.

There’s never been any question that Amazon would provide highly effective tools to Whole Foods in the grocer’s quest to identify and target customers; it’s only been a few months since the deal closed, but there was some impatience expressed by a few analysts who wondered what was taking so long. (Not here, though.)

FYI…I got an email this morning from an MNB reader who got an email from Amazon offering her a Whole Foods coupon, which she plans to use.

This is just the beginning.