Amazon shipped more than 5 billion items worldwide in 2017, up from 1 billion items shipped during the 2016 holiday season, the company has said. And while the number of Prime members is still a closely guarded secret, tens of millions of households are likely program participants. Shipping those billions of items to its many million members is among Amazon’s biggest problems. To solve this, the company is reportedly readying the launch of its own shipping service, which will begin with limited pickups and deliveries in Los Angeles, but may eventually roll out to other markets. It will go a long way toward helping Amazon solve its logistics problem, improve profitability and send it miles ahead of its competition, literally. Getting the last mile right is an imperative for all retailers, big and small. Read more at Retail Dive.