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Amazon Prime one-day delivery ad banned by ASA

The Advertising Standards Authority (ASA) has now banned Amazon from advertising one-day delivery on it’s Prime service after it was found to be “misleading”.

Earlier this week the ASA had asked the online retail giant to “clarify” its its ‘one-day’ delivery claims for Prime customers after the regulatory body received 280 complaints, mostly from Prime customers who reported not receiving their packages within a day.

The ASA said the claim arose from adverts for Amazon Prime on its website in December 2017 which meant Prime users would likely assume “one-day delivery” applied to all Prime-labelled items and would expect them the day after the order was placed.

In response Amazon claimed that consumers were likely to understand from the ad they would not have to pay to use the one-day delivery option, and that it was available on a selection of items.Amazon said the ads did not “promise a particular speed of delivery of a particular product”.

It believed consumers understood from using the website, that individual delivery dates were displayed for each order and that they would have to check each item they were interested in purchasing to find out whether one-day delivery was available.

Amazon added that customers understood the delivery date with one-day delivery was from that particular time to the address to which they wanted the item delivered.

It said that the speed of delivery of a future order “could not form part of consumers’ decision about whether to sign up to Prime”, and added a customer’s “disappointment” about the speed of a one-day delivery order should not render their marketing misleading.

The ASA also said that Amazon provided data on a confidential basis which showed the percentage of their one-day delivery orders which were recorded as on-time in 2017. It showed that the weeks with lower on-time deliveries were affected by snow and ice across the UK.

However the ASA ruled it was unlikely customers would find this information before signing up for Amazon Prime.

In the ruling the ASA said: “Because consumers were likely to understand that, so long as they did not order too late or for Sunday delivery, all Prime-labelled items would be available for delivery the next day with the one-day delivery option.

“When a significant proportion of Prime-labelled items were not available for delivery by the subsequent day with one-day delivery, we concluded that the ad was misleading.”

It concluded that Amazon can no longer say it guarantees next day delivery for its Prime customers in its current form and should make it clear that some of its Prime-labelled items will not be available for next day delivery.”

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