A new Amazon click and collect service will allow customers to click and collect items from partner stores such as Next.
The marketplace is offering the Counter option in the UK and Italy, allowing customers to buy tens of millions items and collect them from local stores.
Customers go through checkout as normal and then choose the Counter pick up point as a delivery location. The service works with one-day and standard shipping service and comes free for Prime members.
When the parcel arrives the customer receives an email notification with a unique barcode and details about the collection store. They show the barcode to store staff who scan it and then retrieve the package.
Launch partners include British clothing store Next and Giunti, Fermopoint and SisalPay stores in Italy.
The service will expand across Europe in the future, with Amazon claiming that partner stores have reported increased footfall and hence sales during trials.
Patrick Supanc, Amazon director of lockers and pickup, said: “With Counter, we’ve used technology to enhance and redesign the click and collect experience.
“We’re excited for customers to experience this service at one of the thousands of stores now available for Counter, but we’re not stopping there. We’re now actively looking to bring even more partners onboard across Europe — from family-run corner shops to retail chains — businesses of all sizes can take advantage of the opportunity as we expand the Counter network for customers.”
Lord Wolfson, CEO of Next PLC, said: “Amazon Counter combines the internet’s power to offer unprecedented choice with all the convenience of local stores. In a tough retail environment our aim is that Amazon Counter will contribute to the continued relevance and vibrancy of our stores.”
Alberto Luisi, CEO and Founder of local store network Fermopoint, said: “Amazon Counter will be an engine to further develop our valued and innovative service and help our store partners attract more customers to their shops.
“The partnership with Amazon represents a new and inspiring reason for growth for Fermopoint. We are happy to work alongside a company that puts customers at the centre of everything it does – a philosophy that we fully embrace.”
A recent report claimed Ocado’s warehouse automation technology was more advanced than Amazon’s.