Amazon has slashed the price of its Amazon Prime Membership for those eligible for food stamps under the federal government’s SNAP (Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program). Regular cost of an Amazon Prime Membership is $10.99 a month — or $99 per year for those who opt for (and who can afford) a one-time payment. The SNAP-eligible will be offered a rate of $5.99 a month.
Amazon has made inroads with its grocery business, a major target of food stamp spending. Amazon’s top competitor, retailer Walmart, is said to receive a significant percentage of all the food stamps dollars distributed by the government, much of it spent by its own employees. The U.S. Department of Agriculture announced a pilot program in January that invited multiple online grocery retailers, including Amazon, to accept food stamps. Lowering the Prime Membership price for these customers is a classic customer retention move by Amazon, a company that continues to write the book on customer satisfaction. The timing of Amazon’s announcement also coincides with proposed cuts to the food stamps program by the Trump administration.