Amazon Blocks Sellers From Using FedEx Ground for Prime Shipments
Amazon.com is blocking its third-party sellers from using FedEx's ground delivery network for Prime shipments, citing a decline in performance heading into the final stretch of the holiday shopping season. The ban on using FedEx’s Ground and Home services starts this week and will last “until the delivery performance of these ship methods improves,” according to an email Amazon sent Sunday to merchants. Amazon has stopped using FedEx for its own deliveries in the U.S., but third-party merchants had still been able to use the carrier. Third-party sellers now account for more than half of the merchandise sold on Amazon’s website, including many items listed as eligible for Prime.
Total Retail's Take: Amazon's decision to ban third-party sellers from using FedEx's ground delivery network for Prime shipments comes on the heels of social media complaints from the retailer's loyalty members about delayed delivery times. To ensure it's meeting its promise of one-day delivery for Prime members this holiday season, Amazon is forced to be ruthless in its measure of carrier performance. Apparently FedEx Ground isn't passing the test. This decision figures to exacerbate the strained relationship between Amazon and FedEx, with the latter severing ties with the retailer earlier this year. With eight days left before Christmas, third-party Amazon sellers that previously used FedEx Ground to ship their orders are scrambling to find new carriers, most likely UPS and the U.S. Postal Service, to pick up the slack. A degradation in service wouldn't be unexpected, both for sellers and customers.