Amazon Prime Day Inks Another Record, But That’s Not The Big Takeaway
19 Jul 2019
Amazon’s two-day Prime Day extravaganza has come and gone, but the takeaways go far beyond the fact that it drew a record number of Prime members who bought more than 175 million items, beating Amazon’s combined Black Friday and Cyber Monday business.
Nor was it a surprise that Prime Day officially became the Black Friday of the summer, with rivals from Walmart to Best Buy vying with Amazon with their own deals. Retailers with over $1 billion in annual sales saw their sales on average jump 68% across July 15-16, relative to a regular Monday and Tuesday, according to Adobe Analytics, which said it tracks e-commerce transactions at 80 of the top 100 U.S. online retailers.
Outside of the holiday season, Monday and Tuesday this week became the third and fourth days, after Memorial Day last year and Labor Day this year, to surpass $2 billion in U.S. online sales, according to Adobe.
Here are some of the key takeaways:
Amazon has record Prime member signups, but can it keep them?
Amazon, which has 100 million-plus Prime members worldwide, said it signed up more new Prime members on Monday than on any previous day, and almost as many on Tuesday, leading to “the two biggest days ever for member signups.”
But the question is, how many of them can Amazon, famous for its free 30-day Prime member trial offers, retain after those new members got the Prime Day deals they coveted?
Captify, which studies consumer search behavior outside of Google and pulls data from Reddit, travel aggregators, retail review sites and others, said searches for “Canceling Amazon Prime” were 18 times higher Tuesday than the day before Prime Day.
Amazon declined to specify its membership retention rate.
Amazon Prime Day inks another record
Amazon’s two-day Prime Day has beaten its combined Black Friday and Cyber Monday sales.PAUL HENNESSY/NURPHOTO VIA GETTY IMAGES
Other retailers still have a ways to go to steal Amazon’s thunder
Rival retailers may want a share of consumer wallets on Prime Day, but Amazon still owns the show for the shopping occasion it invented. Edison Trends, which studies online receipts, said that in the first 24 hours of Prime Day, Amazon took an 88% share of the market measuring a group that includes the company’s four major “Anti-Prime Day” contenders: Best Buy, Walmart, eBay and Target.
Small retailers play catch-up
While deals from Amazon and other big retailers got the spotlight on Prime Day, small retailers also want a piece of the pie.
Unlike last year, when retailers with annual sales under $5 million saw a decline in revenue on Prime Day, this year saw their online sales get a combined 28% lift over the two days, according to Adobe.
Consumers want smart everything
Despite privacy concerns over smart speakers and other smart devices, Amazon Prime members’ purchases on Prime Day showed that the appetite for the likes of Alexa voice assistants and other smart devices remains healthy.
Amazon said its top-selling item in the U.S. and worldwide was the Fire TV Stick with Alexa Remote. Echo Dot, its entry-level Alexa-enabled smart speaker, also ranked as a top seller. The company said “millions of smart home devices” were sold, adding that its customers bought two times the number of Ring and Blink wireless home security devices this Prime Day versus last year when comparing two-day periods.
Grocery items are becoming bigger Prime Day stars
While appliances such as the Instant Pot pressure cooker and Amazon’s own devices continue to rank among top Prime Day sellers, many grocery and other commodity items, including Amazon’s private labels, also drove sales.
For example, in United Arab Emirates, Procter & Gamble’s Ariel laundry detergent was a top seller. In Singapore, it was Coca-Cola Zero Sugar soda. Amazon’s own Mama Bear diapers were a winner in the Netherlands while its Happy Belly water was a bestseller in Japan.
Nielsen, citing Rakuten Intelligence data, said Amazon doubled its U.S. consumer packaged goods sales for Prime Day last year compared with an average two-day span. Grocery last year was the second-highest selling CPG category on Prime Day, behind health and beauty products. “Consumers continue to warm up to the idea of grocery shopping online—more than ever before,” Nielsen said.
By Andria Cheng