After raising Prime prices earlier in the year, Amazon shoppers may soon be having to pay even more to buy from the online retailer. Starting at the end of the month, a new surcharge to third-party sellers may mean the fee increases get passed onto buyers.
Amazon rolling out new fuel and inflation surcharge
An overwhelming majority of Amazon’s third-party sellers take advantage of the company’s Fulfillment by Amazon (FBA) program, and soon those that do will be hit with an increased fee. Starting on April 28, 2022, a 5% fuel and inflation surcharge will be applied to FBA fulfillment fees.
What this means for shoppers has yet to be shown, but we can only imagine it means these sellers will pass the increased costs of doing business through Amazon onto buyers.
In an email to CNBC, an Amazon spokesperson noted the following on the updated pricing.
In 2022, we expected a return to normalcy as COVID-19 restrictions around the world eased, but fuel and inflation have presented further challenges. It is still unclear if these inflationary costs will go up or down, or for how long they will persist, so rather than a permanent fee change, we will be employing a fuel and inflation surcharge for the first time — a mechanism broadly used across supply chain providers.
Today’s news also arrives a few months after Amazon announced that it would be raising Prime subscription prices for the first time in years. It is yet another instance where despite record earnings, the increased cost is still being passed onto shoppers.
As of now, major brands have no official announcements as to how the pricing will update following the new Amazon surcharge policy. That being said, it is likely that we’ll begin to see some form of price increases roll out through the rest of the year. It has already been a trend for quite a few popular third-party sellers to increase item pricing over the past year or so during the COVID-19 pandemic, so it is likely this will continue with the added surcharges taken into consideration.
But to what exact degree sellers begin passing those cost increases over to shoppers has yet to be seen. We’ll be sure to report back come the end of the month if widespread changes become apparent across Amazon.
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