For over a decade, Amazon Prime has been recognized as one of the best deals on the web. For a monthly or annual fee, Prime members get free two-day shipping on millions of items through Amazon’s retail outlet, while also enjoying access to a wide range of exclusive perks. The total number of Amazon Prime members just topped 100 million in April, so what did Amazon do to celebrate this milestone? Why, raise annual membership costs by $20 a year, of course. Amazon Prime has always been considered one of the best values in online retail due to its free two-day shipping and other perks, but will the price hike change that?
The price increase is set to go into effect on May 11. The price of a general membership will increase from $99 a year to $119. No change in perks or benefits are expected. General and student monthly memberships are unaffected, but annual student memberships will go up to $59 a year. Four years ago, there was a similar $20 increase when Amazon rolled out Prime Music. Whether or not this price increase means another addition in content has yet to be announced.
While membership totals are up and Amazon’s overall annual revenue continues to increase, Amazon’s retail sales have fallen for the second straight quarter, and some analysts believe the price hike could be an attempt to counteract that loss of retail sales. Others warn that such a significant increase could result in declining membership numbers or growth. Still, Amazon proponents are confident that Prime still offers one of the best overall values of any subscription package on the web today.
Will the price increase drive members away? Likely not the most loyal, but for those on the fence, it could be a deal breaker. Will you keep your Prime membership despite the price increase?