Amazon’s Most Promising ‘Stealth’ Project, the Treasure Truck, Celebrates 1st Birthday

This friday, the Amazon Treasure Truck celebrated its first year anniversary, see the offical social media updates on Facebook and on Twitter.

Amazon Treasure Truck.png

The Amazon Treasure Truck, a location based, short-term deals model that only works with the premise of everyone owning a smartphone, is promising because it allows Amazon to do local deals with comparatively low costs and, crucially, a high flexibility in both scope and location. (compared to, say, stores or other permanent solutions)

It is surprising how little attention Amazon’s Treasure Truck has gotten in its first year. (And how little other retailers, online and offline, seem yet to be interested in copying and adapting the model. This is a model worth exploring for certain online retailers to expand “physically” with.)

Imagine a Treasure Truck fleet of a thousand roaming the streets in the US. (This is both far more promising and far more likely than Amazon building 2,000 stores in the US. For the same reasons.)

A year ago, we looked at the Treasure Truck:

Those trucks are a fascinating new endeavor by Amazon (or shall we say “Amazon startup”?). They combine the flexibility of smartphones to reach people locally with good old flash sales. Using trucks increases the addressable market -in contrast to an actual store! Getting the goods you just bought in the app from a nearby truck within minutes is perfect for impulse purchases.

What could a truck fleet be used for other than flash sales? How could this be combined with nearby Amazon locations and an Amazon Flex P2P delivery service?


It seems likely that the Treasure Truck will come next to London. A job posting for Senior Biz Dev Manager in London for example reads:

You will be part of building an innovative new retail experience focused on creating new daily habits, cross shopping, and brand loyalty through physical vehicles.

The Senior Business Development Manager will help to shape and drive the new offering by delivering unique and amazing product offers for our customers.


It doesn’t look like shoppers will have to be in London to enjoy the deals, either. A posting for an event marketing manager says Amazon will bring the truck to “various locations around the UK.”

Like Prime Now, the Treasure Truck is a mobile concept that goes truly “mobile native”,1 so to speak:

Download the latest version of the Amazon Mobile Shopping app, and select Treasure Truck from the main menu. After you tap the I Want This button, you’ll choose the Treasure Truck location and pickup window that is most convenient for you. Then, come meet Treasure Truck at that location, anytime within the pickup window, on the very same day you order.

Our featured products can only be purchased using the Amazon Mobile Shopping app on iPhone, Android, and Fire Phone. For the best experience, make sure you download the latest version of the Amazon Mobile Shopping app from the app store. You cannot place an order over the phone or the PC website, and we do not ship Treasure Truck products—to get your purchase, you come meet the Truck!

The design agency behind the Treasure Truck’s look and feel is Household Design:

Customers download the Treasure Truck app (currently piloting in Seattle, USA), see what product is on offer that week, then click to buy. They are alerted to when the Truck is in their local area and can collect in person, have fun, be inspired, shop additional items and share their story on social media. Newcomers are attracted to the spectacle and are enticed to sign up. […]

Household created the brand expression and experience for the Treasure Truck, developing the proposition, logo and assets, packaging, analogue and digital communications and interactive truck experiences. We also repurposed the truck chassis itself, partnering with CSG in Detroit to build and manufacture the truck.

treasure truck design.png

As is the case with so many parts at Amazon these days, the Treasure Truck is designed to be a marketplace and service for brands, manufacturers and local partners. And the potential here lies in part in building a system that is parts last mile logistics service, part pick-up location, fueled by mobile. The Treasure Truck might, over time, morph into a full-fledged local & mobile marketplace.

Mobile is not just apps.

More on this topic:

  1. Buzzword quota fulfilled. 


  1. […] Prime Now is a marketplace (for local partners), Prime is closely tied to Amazon Marketplace, and even the Treasure Truck is a (local) marketplace in the making. Amazon also applies platform thinking to logistics with its […]


  2. […] Amazon’s Most Promising ‘Stealth’ Project, the Treasure Truck, Celebrates 1st Birthday […]


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