Technology/Services

Amazon Expands Retail Package Pickup Service

C-stores have ‘expressed interest’ in Counter
Photograph courtesy of Amazon

SEATTLE — Amazon has expanded Counter, a network of staffed pickup points that gives customers the option to pick up their Amazon packages in-store at a partner location.

With this expansion, customers now have access to thousands more Amazon Hub Counter locations with Amazon’s new store partners GNC, Health Mart and Stage Stores. Delivery to a Counter location is available for the tens of millions of items sold on Amazon.com, according to the company. The service is available to all Amazon customers at no extra cost.

“The response we’ve heard from our customers and partners after the launch of Counter earlier this year has been tremendous,” said Patrick Supanc, worldwide director of Amazon Hub. “This new network of pickup points gives customers a pickup experience that is fast, flexible and convenient, and partners are thrilled with the strong engagement and additional foot traffic Counter is driving for their stores.”

Counter is part of the Amazon Hub network of pickup locations, which also includes thousands of Amazon Lockers nationwide. For partners, Counter turns a store of any size into a pickup location for Amazon customers. Counter’s design aims to efficiently serve customers picking up packages without disrupting their daily activities.

As Amazon’s logistics network continues to grow, the company is enabling delivery at even faster speeds, and in the most convenient locations. The company has been trialing Amazon Hub Counter with GNC, Health Mart and Stage Stages for the past few months. Global health and wellness brand GNC is focused on quality performance and nutritional supplements. Health Mart is a network of independently owned and operated pharmacies in the U.S. In small cities and towns across the country, Stage Stores offers name brands through its Gordmans off-price stores, Bealls, Goody’s, Palais Royal, Peebles and Stage department stores.

“For six years, my pharmacy team has served our community and made sure our patients get the care they need,” said Laura Temple, registered pharmacist and owner of Laura’s Health Mart Pharmacy in Azle, Texas. “Amazon Hub Counter has given my current patients a new, convenient way to pick up their Amazon packages, and it’s also brought in new neighbors who have then been introduced to the meaningful care at my pharmacy. I’m delighted to offer Counter in my local store.”

Since its U.S. launch in June 2019, Amazon Hub Counter has brought in tens of thousands of Amazon customers to partner locations. Customers have ordered everything from kitchen utensils to power tools and even bags of dog food for delivery to a Counter location, with Thursday being the most popular day to pick up packages. An array of retailers, convenience stores and small businesses have expressed interest in becoming a Counter partner, according to Amazon.

Here's how it works: 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 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 Plus and Apartment Locker, designed to bring convenience to customers via pickup and return points. Locker is available in more than 900 cities and towns across the U.S., offering an alternative delivery option at no additional cost. Locker Plus locations are in neighborhoods, cities and university campuses across the U.S., staffed by associates. For apartment buildings, Apartment Locker gives residents an opportunity to receive all their packages—from Amazon and elsewhere—at a time of their choosing.

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