Update: Amazon will open a second distribution centre this year and a fully operational fulfilment centre in Spring 2022. Read more.
The shopping experience on Amazon.co.uk for people in Ireland has been mixed over the years. To be fair to Amazon, they’ve always been incredible from a customer care point of view even if their treatment of staff globally has been at least questionable. For shoppers, in the back of your mind is always that you’re shopping with a UK website which sits funny both from a local economy and returns point of view. But I’ve noticed something in the past few days. Amazon has started to ship from a Dublin distribution centre.
Shopping On Amazon In Ireland Over The Years
Shopping on Amazon.co.uk isn’t a new concept for people living in Ireland. I’ve pulled together the ultimate Amazon.co.uk shopping guide to help people save money with Revolut and avoid extra fees by using virtual UK shipping address. I’ve had a few times where something went wrong with an order but Amazon customer care has always gone above and beyond to resolve issues with minimal impact to me.
It’s a mad old time to be talking about Amazon opening their distribution centre in Dublin. Right now, there’s a massive drive for people to shop locally due to the whole COVID-19 thing. Personally, I’ve never shopping locally so much in my life. From food to general bits and pieces, I’m trying to keep money in the local economy. But I have to admit, sometimes I find it hard.
The high street struggles to offer the sheer range of products that Amazon offers. A few weeks back, I heard someone say “dig down into the Google search results to find Irish companies selling what you’re looking for” but it is more than that. Amazon offers incomparable selection and great value. Sure, they’re a somewhat big faceless corporate entity but at the same time there’ll come a day where it’s the only place that has what you need at an affordable price.
While I shop locally as much as possible, recently I did need something that I could only find at a reasonable price on Amazon.co.uk. When the order was being delivered I knew something major had changed.
Amazon Now Ships Some Orders From Dublin
Earlier this month, Amazon opened a logistics delivery station in Dublin and Amazon has confirmed to me that this “is not a trial”.
Amazon opening this centre has created twenty permanent jobs in Dublin and utilises local delivery companies to get you your orders. Right now, this setup is delivering to Dublin and the surrounding area.
Sarah-Jane Heffernan, Delivery Station Manager, said “we are delighted to have opened our first delivery station in Dublin where Amazon’s 20+ years of operational expertise, technology advancements and investment in transportation infrastructure is enabling faster delivery for customers than ever before seven days a week. The site in Rathcoole is a great location and we are excited to be delivering to our customers in Dublin and the surrounding area”.
What This Means For Irish Shoppers
The immediate impact for Irish shoppers is hopefully a better delivery experience. I first experienced Amazon’s own delivery service while in Germany and it looks like a similar system has been adopted for Ireland. Some benefits of having an Irish distribution centre is increased range or products (including items with batteries) which can be delivered faster than ever.
Last week, I had an item delivered at 9.30am on a Sunday, so that’s something you might have to get used to too. The driver called me and said he was an “Amazon delivery driver” not An Post or DPD as I’m used to.
It was another order that gave the game away for me this week. I received a notification that my order would be delivered later in the day. When I opened the notification I was able to track my order stop by stop. One of the most frustrating things about shopping online these days is being given a two day delivery window so you need to work your whole day around being home to sign for your order.
With this Amazon system, you can see if your order is about to land or if it’s eight stops away.
When my order landed it was hilariously wrong but Amazon’s typically brilliant customer care kicked in and resolved everything in just a few moments over webchat.
Amazon’s own delivery service doesn’t replace existing partners like An Post and DPD. Instead Amazon says it adds additional capacity to meet growing demand and will continue to work alongside existing partners.
Impact Of Amazon In Ireland
So, the full story here is Amazon has finally started to focus properly on Ireland. This may come as a direct result of Brexit or COVID-19 but the big challenge for Irish business is going to be the world’s biggest e-commerce company entering the market to poach customers.
As I said, we should all be trying more than ever to support Irish businesses but Irish businesses need to adapt much more quickly to meet the needs of the modern consumer. I do beg you to try and spend locally when you can but also don’t feel bad if you turn to Amazon.co.uk to pick up something either.
Update: This article was updated to include that Amazon’s own delivery service will add support to existing partners like An Post and DPD, not replace it.