My curiosity over Amazon Pantry led me to experiment and last week I split my weekly online shop across Ocado for fresh and Amazon for the non-fresh elements.
Here's 3 reasons why it didn't work for me:
1. Price - yes, Amazon are offering better prices than the supermarkets on branded products. However, branded products are typically over 20% more expensive than own label goods not offered by Amazon. So net - you are no better off. And that's before you come to the delivery.
2. Delivery - you can only shop on Pantry if you are already paying the annual subscription for Prime. You then pay £2.99 for your first box and 0.99p for subsequent boxes. It was more expensive than my Ocado delivery. The Pantry order was delivered across 2 days, not ideal. The boxes are massive and full of extraneous packaging material. Even after breaking them down they filled our recycling bin for the weekend. Unlike helpful Ocado who take all the packaging away for you. And finally, Ocado bring the shopping straight into the kitchen. The Amazon delivery guy helpfully told me to be careful as the box was heavy but it was against the rules for him to carry it over the threshold.
3. Convenience - splitting my online order across providers was a hassle. The range on Amazon is paltry. I ended up paying two lots of delivery charges and receiving x3 shipments over 2 days. The only delivery with a planned arrival time on was Ocado. The bulky packaging materials on Prime left me with a bad environmental conscience and a bad back.
In conclusion, I wanted to love Amazon Pantry for all the reasons i love Amazon but it let me down on core Amazon values of price, range, delivery and convenience. The next time i range away from Ocado will likely be when Aldi and Lidl launch their online offers.
1. Amazon Pantry still the cheapest - by a wide margin Based on our latest pricing data from January 2016, Amazon Pantry has maintained its significant price advantage: UK supermarkets were priced between 18% and 26% higher on 2,774 identical items. As in December 2015, Asda remained the retailer closest in price to Pantry – albeit 18% more expensive, on average, compared to 16% in December. The biggest change came from Waitrose, which went from 29% more expensive than Pantry to 24%, and from Morrisons, which went from just 20% more expensive than Pantry to 25%.