THE CLARUS Blog

100 Million U.S. Prime Members – Why Amazon Keeps Gaining Momentum

As many brands rethink their respective loyalty strategies in 2019, there is one program that stands as the gold standard for all to see: Amazon’s Prime program.

After eclipsing 100 million global members last April, the incredibly successful Prime program achieved the same last month in the U.S.

U.S. Prime membership reached 101 million as of Dec. 31, 2018, according to estimates from Consumer Intelligence Research Partners (CIRP). This figure represents a 10 percent year-over-year increase.

 

The Power of Prime

Anywhere you turn in the retail world today, it doesn’t take long before you hear the name Amazon, which is usually quickly followed by its Prime premium loyalty program.

So why is there such a massive appeal for this program?

To start with, Amazon officials continually listen to their customers, identify their pain points, and address them through their Prime program.

Creating a seamless customer experience, based on mutually rewarding customer loyalty, embodies the definition of a two-way relationship that only builds over time. And that is precisely what the Prime program does.

For many now, the premium loyalty model is a shining example of how brands are rethinking customer loyalty. They are creating programs tailored to their specific needs, supporting their brand messaging, impacting the customer experience, and delivering results.

Prime redefines loyalty in that customers want to become members, stay engaged, and promote brand advocacy.

 

Prime Offers Members Immense Value

Prime members are attracted to the program for its convenience (free two-day shipping), simplicity, and slew of enticing benefits.

Amazon officials know only too well the value of their Prime members: Prime members spend nearly five times the amount of non-Prime members. Prime provides an unparalleled combination of shopping and entertainment benefits. 

The number of items eligible for free two-day shipping increased in recent years from 20 million to more than 100 million items. That’s why Amazon does everything in its power to increase Prime membership, such as Prime Day.

Another key recruitment tool for Prime is the free user trials. Users get to see the benefit before paying for it. And the results are staggering: 73 percent of the trial users become Prime members.

One might think that Amazon officials can sit back and relax because Prime is such a highly successful program and not worry about anything. But that assumption would be misguided.

One of the things that makes Prime so appealing is that Amazon officials continue to listen to their customers to find out how they can improve the program. It’s a never-ending mission for Amazon officials to please their Prime members and creates mutual trust.

 

Popularity of Prime

The annual membership price of $119 more than pays for itself through Prime’s myriad of benefits such as unlimited video streaming, limited music streaming, unlimited photo storage, one free e-book per month, free audio books, and free games.

Removing pain points, such as paying for shipping, through one annual fee, is quite attractive to consumers. Then you mix in a compelling value proposition and you have loyal members who tell everyone about your program.

Despite the annual fee, Prime members experience that feeling of “getting something for free.” The sensation of being a Prime member is quite addictive, which is shown through its enormous membership numbers.

The goal of any loyalty program is to gain a faithful following for a brand that meets their needs and expectations, heightens the customer experience, and simplifies the shopping experience.

Ongoing communication between Amazon and its Prime members always keeps the Seattle-based online behemoth on top of any pain points and keeps everyone engaged.

 

Prime is the Most Successful Premium Loyalty Program

Premium loyalty programs like Prime engage your best customers in ways that brands have never seen before. They highlight the power behind a brand’s best customers.

Prime members shop more, spend more on each occasion, and become brand advocates. As a result, premium loyalty programs can become part of a person’s daily life.

The instant gratification and 24/7 benefits that Prime offer consumers can’t be touched by a traditional loyalty program.

Once consumers become Prime members, they usually remain heavily invested in the program. The effect that a premium loyalty program has on its members is profound. That type of loyalty is what all retailers search for and work toward.

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