SEATTLE — Amazon rolled out its Counter package pickup service in the United States last month at more than 100 Rite Aid Corp. locations.
The new network of staffed pickup points gives customers the option to pick up their Amazon packages in-store at a partner location. Delivery to a Counter location is available for the tens of millions of items sold on Amazon.com and works with same-day, one-day, two-day and standard shipping. The new service is available to all customers at no extra cost.
Amazon plans to expand Counter to thousands of retail stores across the country. By the end of the year, the service will roll out across 1,500 Rite Aid stores — from Oyster Bay, on Long Island, to Chula Vista, Calif. Amazon is actively looking to bring additional partners on board, including small to midsize businesses and other large chains.
“Creating a seamless, convenient customer experience is a key element of our strategy and digital transformation,” said Jocelyn Konrad, executive vice president of pharmacy and retail operations at Rite Aid. “Being the first store partner for Counter in the U.S. is a differentiator for Rite Aid, and we believe our partnership with Amazon, that includes Locker, creates a stronger in-store experience for existing customers and new customers that come in to pick up their packages.”
Amazon built and designed the technology for Counter from the ground up, resulting in a quick and simple package pickup experience for customers. For store partners, Counter’s straightforward pickup flow and user-friendly technology helps ensure store associates can serve customers without disrupting their daily activities. Counter originally launched in the U.K. with NEXT and in Italy with Giunti Al Punto Librerie, Fermopoint and SisalPay stores. The service has been positively received, driving strong customer engagement and additional foot traffic for partners.
“Amazon is always looking for innovative and convenient ways for customers to ship and receive their orders,” explained Patrick Supanc, worldwide director of Amazon Hub. “With Counter, we’ve leveraged our growing logistics network and invested in new, easy-to-use technology to give customers yet another delivery option rooted in flexibility and control. We are excited to partner with national businesses like Rite Aid, and local businesses in the future, to create an outstanding experience for our shared customers.”
Shipping to a Counter pickup point is easy and secure. After shopping on Amazon.com, customers proceed to checkout and select one of the Counter pickup points available in their ZIP code as their delivery location. As soon as their package arrives at the store, customers receive an email notification with a unique barcode as well as a reminder of the address and the business hours of their selected store. At the store, customers provide the barcode to store staff, who will scan it, retrieve the package and hand it to the customer. Customers have 14 days to collect their package.
Counter is part of the Amazon Hub family, which includes Locker, Locker+ and Apartment Locker, designed to bring the ultimate convenience to customers via pickup and return points.