This year, Prime Day is October 13-14. How will it influence holiday shopping and how should retailers prepare?
Will Prime Day Kickstart the 2020 Holiday Shopping?
The answer is YES.
Amazon has always had an outsized impact on online shopping in the United States. During 2019, Prime Day sales registered an increase of 70%+ from 2018. Also, the impressions continued to grow at 140% for days following Prime Day. Even on Google, the product search impressions saw a 25% increase during Prime Day (with the impressions spiking to 40% during certain day-parts).
Moreover, the other mega retailers like Walmart and Target have announced their online sales events during the same week (Walmart’s Big Save Event starts at 7 pm ET on October 11, while Target’s Deal Days exactly coincide with Prime Day). Online shoppers may find it difficult to miss all these sales events.
After 7 months of pandemic-led shipping delays and product stockouts, shoppers are more likely to do their holiday shopping earlier than prior years. NetElixir believes Prime Day will act as that trigger for the holiday shoppers, thereby kickstarting the longest holiday shopping season ever.
A longer holiday shopping season, coupled with fewer shoppers visiting stores, will drive an explosive growth in online sales in Q4 this year. We estimate eCommerce will account for 25% of all holiday retail sales, up from 16% last holiday season. This amounts to an incremental online sales volume of $50B-$80B compared to the 2019 holidays.
So, how should the retailers prepare for this mega sales event and ride the wave to kickstart their holiday shopping season?
Recommendations for Online Retailers for Prime Day 2020
- Multi-channel sales will accelerate at a rapid pace. Ensure that your ads are visible on not just Amazon, but also search engines and social media channels.
- Focus on the products that you want to aggressively promote during Prime Day. You may want to think of Lightning Deals and creating a Prime Day Subcategory page.
- Ensure that there is adequate inventory – both for FBA as well as direct fulfillment. Nothing is more painful than losing valuable orders and revenue because you don’t have stock.
- If you are advertising on Amazon, prioritize products that have a higher BUY BOX percentage and go aggressive on Sponsored Ads by opening them up for popular search queries.
- Keep the search and social ad budgets high to tap into the surge in product search volumes. For products sold exclusively from your website, you can run an aggressive search ad campaign highlighting the exclusivity and your Prime Day Offer.
- Prime Day only pricing should be offered to move inventory, especially if there is a lot of remaining stock from Q2 and Q3. Try to activate heavy discounts on any stock that needs to be moved before the end of the year. This data and inventory-clearing will help you plan better for Black Friday and Cyber Monday deals and showcase new products specifically for that time.
- For your Amazon white labelled product: focus on key brand attributes in your ad creatives for brand searches to better help you retain your loyal existing customers. Also, employ retargeting and advance audience targeting (in-market, affinity, and lookalike) to maximize sales opportunities, while showing specific messaging for users across different stages in the purchase funnel.
- Small businesses linked to Amazon should see higher sales this Prime Day due to Amazon’s $10 credit for Small Merchants.
What about if you don’t have an Amazon marketplace? We recommend capturing market share by taking advantage of the surges in search volume. This may not necessarily translate into higher sales, but will boost your traffic as customers comparison shop for truly the best deal. Carefully monitor similar products on Amazon, as unavailability of products during Prime Day can open up opportunities for your products and store to fill the gap. Leverage the exclusivity of your sale and words like “Prime” in your ad copy to entice searchers.
This year’s Prime Day will set the tone for the holiday season; let’s make sure it’s a jingle.