If you still doubt the power of Amazon, look no further than the new summer shopping holiday – Prime Day. For the fourth straight year, the ecommerce giant is unleashing over a day’s worth of deals to its more than 100 million Prime members.
When Is Prime Day 2018?
This year’s event is too big for just 24 hours (or even last year’s 30-hour spree). Amazon kicks off 2018’s Prime Day at 3 p.m. EST on Monday, July 16. The sales will run through 3 a.m. EST on Wednesday, July 18. That’s 36 hours of exclusive prices and promotions. No wonder many have dubbed Prime Day as the summer Black Friday.
Why Is Prime Day Such a Big Deal?
Last year’s event set the record for Amazon’s biggest sales day in history, a 60% increase from the previous year. With more Prime subscribers and a longer sale period, it’s a safe bet 2018 will top it. Prime Day has grown too significant for other retailers to ignore.
If you’re a small online retailer, you may have mixed feelings about Amazon (or perhaps downright negative ones). While it’s natural for smaller retailers to be cautious with a powerhouse like Amazon, some retailers are finding success by working with Amazon and other online marketplaces.
Last year we surveyed 500 small-to-mid-sized U.S. retailers and discovered that 60% of them attributed at least half their online sales to Amazon, eBay, and Jet. 25% said they planned to invest in Amazon the most over the next five years.
Selling on Amazon can be a valuable opportunity for smaller retailers, one that has become virtually essential with the emergence of Prime Day. Even without Lighting Deals or Deals of the Day, your business can still benefit from the elevated traffic and attention the event brings. To better prepare for the frenzy, keep the following tips in mind.
Optimize Your Brand Presence on Amazon
If you don’t have a Brand Store on Amazon, now is the time to set one up. Brand Stores allow you to sell your products on Amazon, while retaining a strong sense of brand identity. Take advantage of all the features and templates Amazon offers to help you stand out from your competitors. These include enhanced product images and descriptions to make a stronger impression on customers. In fact, using Amazon’s Enhanced Branded Content has been shown to lead to higher conversion rates.
Just as you’d keep a brick-and-mortar store clean and tidy, you should do the same for your Amazon product pages. Make your product titles and descriptions as detailed as possible. Include plenty of high-quality images. Ensure your products are categorized correctly and add relevant search terms to gain a competitive edge.
To learn more about the benefits of an Amazon Brand Store and how to set yours up effectively, check out our #SEOWeek blog about Using Amazon to Fuel Organic Growth.
Provide a Superior Customer Experience
It may feel easy to lose yourself in the monolithic machine of Amazon. However, there’s plenty of room for good old-fashioned customer service. During the fast-paced excitement of Prime Day, that can make all the difference.
If you can’t quite compete on price, separate yourself from the pack by paying special attention to customers and providing a personal touch. Amazon shoppers can ask third-party sellers questions directly or submit queries on specific product pages. Keep close track of any questions during the Prime Day period and answer them promptly. Your potential customers will appreciate it and may become more likely to convert.
You also don’t want more tangible concerns to spoil the party. First and foremost, make sure you have enough inventory to meet demand. First-time Prime Day participants may be surprised at how quickly some items sell. If you’re not prepared, you’ll find yourself out of stock only a few hours into the event. Be ready to solve any fulfillment issues on-the-fly, as well.
Don’t Ignore Other Marketplaces
Prime Day can still be good news for you even if you don’t sell on Amazon. In the past, Prime Day has produced a “halo effect” for other online retailers, who hold their own promotions and experience a noticeable sales boost during the event.
If you’re active on other marketplaces like eBay, Jet, and Walmart.com, make sure your online storefront is organized and be ready for higher-than-average interest and orders from customers.
Seize the (Prime) Day!
Whether it’s your first Prime Day or fourth, these easy steps can help you see success during summer’s biggest online shopping event. After learning what works best for your business, you’ll be in much better shape for all the upcoming important dates on your calendar: Black Friday, Cyber Monday, the holiday season… and yes, next year’s Prime Day.