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Amazon confirms expansion of UK grocery range

31 December 2015 - 10:55 by Simon Crisp

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While the nation's traditional supermarket chains may be struggling at the moment, e-commerce giant, Amazon, is gearing up to gain an even greater foothold in this part of the market, according to the Guardian.

This week, the firm announced that it was adding even more products to its Pantry grocery delivery service, aiming to drive sales significantly in 2016 in the UK, so that people are more likely to order their weekly shop from Amazon via safe shopping online rather than sticking with incumbents like Tesco and Sainsbury’s.

It has only been two months since Amazon Pantry went live in the UK, but the selection of 4,000 items which are currently on offer on its digital shelves will be increased rapidly next year, with company spokesperson, Christopher North, saying that early signs for the success of the scheme were promising.

Part of the problem for rival chains is that Amazon is targeting the Pantry service at those who want to top up on shopping more than once a week, which has become an increasingly common practice among UK households. The ‘little and often’ approach has led to a boom in smaller convenience stores, which is the experience that Amazon hopes to replicate via safe shopping online.

A £2.99 delivery fee applies to Pantry orders, although the lack of fresh produce on offer for UK customers at the moment might limit its appeal. So if the Amazon Fresh service is to be translated across from its American operation, then even more customers could be converted to its way of thinking.

North promised that international expansion was on the horizon, citing the firm’s solid economic foundations as being key to its ability to compete in this part of the market. And rivals will, no doubt, consider it to be a serious threat.