November 12, 2008, 12:00 AM

Amazon extends text-to-buy program with daily deal alerts to mobile phones

Shoppers can sign up to receive the latest offers by text message. They can buy with a text message reply, or get more information at Amazon’s mobile commerce site.

Amazon.com Inc. announced today it will inform consumers who sign up of daily deals by text messages to their cell phones and let them buy the item by sending a return text.

Amazon posts offers each day to a section of its web site called Gold Box, and consumers who receive the text message can buy the offered item by texting back “buygb.” Or they can follow a link in the message to Amazon’s mobile web site to get more information about the offer.

"Customers come to Amazon.com for low prices," says Eva Manolis, vice president of Retail Customer Experience. "We are obsessed with lowering prices and we work hard every day to make it even easier to find and buy the best deals on the site. We`re excited to offer customers new features like Amazon`s Daily Deal Text Alerts in time for holiday shopping." Consumers can sign up for the offer at www.amazon.com/gp/anywhere/sms/goldbox.

The daily deal feature extends Amazon’s industry-leading foray into text message shopping. Amazon, No. 1 in the Internet Retailer Top 500 Guide, introduced earlier this year a feature called TextBuyIt that allows customers to buy via text messages from their mobile phones. QVC Inc., No. 11, later introduced a similar feature, but those two retailers remain the only two major online retailers with a text-to-buy program.

Amazon also announced today several holiday-related initiatives:

  • A “Get Ready for the Holidays” page featuring offers on products for holiday decorating and entertaining and for winterizing a home.
  • A “Holiday Gift Ideas” page featuring gift suggestions in popular categories such as toys, televisions and tools.
  • A blog in which celebrity chefs will offer holiday recipes, gift ideas and cooking tips.

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