Amazon may have to hedge its 'next day delivery' promise in the UK

Leaked reports suggest Amazon will have to qualify its 'next day delivery' promise in the UK after failing to get Prime deliveries sorted on time over the Christmas period. The claim would have to be amended on the Amazon website and in any associated advertising.

That's according to a story in The Times, which has obtained an advance preview of the Advertising Standards Authority (ASA) report due out soon. The ASA has been investigating whether Amazon can indeed offer unlimited next day deliveries to customers who sign up to pay a Prime subscription fee every month.

The imminent ruling will apparently say a "significant proportion" of Amazon items labelled with the Prime sticker could not be delivered the next day in the run up to Christmas – and so the Prime package advertising claims were misleading to customers.

Blame it on the weather

If the ASA does indeed crack down on what Amazon can and can't say about its Prime service, we'll have to wait and see just how drastic the changes have to be – a small tweak in the wording of its advertising might not be too noticeable to potential customers.

In a statement given to The Guardian, Amazon said that shipping dates are clearly shown before customers place an order. It also admitted a "small proportion" of deliveries missed their promised slots over the Christmas period, largely due to a stretch of bad weather that affected every company trying to get to customers' doors.

Amazon Prime includes plenty of benefits besides next day delivery of course, from streaming videos to special sales discounts. Still, Amazon won't be pleased at having to adjust the way it can market Prime subscriptions to its customers.

David Nield
Freelance Contributor

Dave is a freelance tech journalist who has been writing about gadgets, apps and the web for more than two decades. Based out of Stockport, England, on TechRadar you'll find him covering news, features and reviews, particularly for phones, tablets and wearables. Working to ensure our breaking news coverage is the best in the business over weekends, David also has bylines at Gizmodo, T3, PopSci and a few other places besides, as well as being many years editing the likes of PC Explorer and The Hardware Handbook.