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Is Prime Day turning into Prime Week (or Prime Month)?

Jimit Director of ABM
June 18, 2021
Is Prime Day turning into Prime Week (or Prime Month)?
Author: Tod Harrick, Sr. Director, Professional Services

📈This year, we saw 24% on average for early discounts and are on track to see that peak at 35% compared to last year’s high of 26% on event days.

⚡️2020 traffic increased by 2.1X during Prime Day and this year we are already seeing traffic levels skyrocket to an expected all-time high of 2.4X

💰Brands saw a 1.9X jump in sales in 2020, this year at the rate we are observing this minute we expect to see over a 2.2X BOOM 💥

👼Post-Prime Day sales give brands a chance to lock in new customers with Subscribe & Save discounts on event day purchases

Prime Day began as a single day, but by its third year, it was 30 hours, then 36, and now 48. And as the deal space gets more crowded and advertising gets more expensive (the CPC have gone up by almost 20% Y-o-Y), some sellers and brands turn to early deals to try to get a jump on the competition by rolling out even more early deals, turning the event into a “Prime Week”. 

However, the big question is, does it work? 

Our research and data say no, it does not. In 2019, we saw an increase in discounting in the days leading up to Prime Day, with average discount levels on Amazon increasing by about 10%. In 2020, we saw a bigger, clearly intentional 20% spike in discount levels 3-4 days before the event itself.

 

Figure 1: Spikes in discounts 2 days before Prime Day in both 2019 and 2020

However, none of these discounts created a real lift. Sales and Traffic pre-Prime Day remained flat. Deals actually performed worse than they would have normally.

 

Figure 2: Sales Drop immediately before and after Prime Day in 2019 and 2020

Psychologically, it appears that customers have been conditioned to believe that pre-Prime day deals are not as good as deals on Prime Day itself, and they prefer to wait. 

Figure 3: Significant drop in Glance Views Prior to Prime Days

Our advice to brands is to not lose focus trying to figure out an early deal strategy and focus on getting it right on the day of the event itself when the traffic spikes and creates the sales you are looking for, and that — by the way — includes focusing the bulk of your attention on the products you are NOT discounting (more on that in our next post).

Post-Prime Day, however, there is an opportunity to leverage Prime Day traffic to drive additional sales through two strategies

  1. Subscribe & Save discounts on Prime Day purchases
  2. Smaller discounts and advertising surges, on high-converting, high-margin variants of products purchased on Prime Day. See our “Prime Day Success Punch List”.

Note: one reason customers may believe pre-Prime day deals aren’t as good as actual Prime Day deals is that they are not. Looking at the deals on televisions Amazon is advertising right now, it’s clear that the “discounts” those deals are featuring are more a result of list price manipulation than real value pricing. This 32-inch HDTV, for example, looks great at $119.99, or 40% of its list price of $199.99.

But a quick check on any price history tracker, shows that as recently as March, the list price on this product was only $119. 

  The seller (ironically – in this case – Best Buy using Amazon as an eCommerce sales platform), raised the list price in May so that it would be at a higher price for 30 days, meeting Amazon’s requirements for qualifying as a deal with this new discount, but really it’s just the old price. So, my advice to customers is the same as my advice to brands. Don’t waste your time and effort trying to smoke out pre-Prime Day deals. The real goodness is on the day itself.

If you’d like to understand how CommerceIQ can help your brand succeed at Amazon, be sure to contact us for more information or request a demo today.

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