How have retailers communicated their sales events to compete against Amazon this year?
Last year’s two-day Prime Day broke all records as Amazon’s biggest shopping event of all time. Its success has caused a ripple effect with more retailers discounting during this time than ever before.
Despite Prime Day‘s potential delay until October, retailers continued to run offers to win back market share from the e-comm giant. We round up recent communications and lessons learned from the 2019 sales.
With the pandemic causing Prime Day to be pushed out, Amazon opted to run the Big Style Sale from June 22nd – 28th with deals up to 50% off major brands. This offer was also the most communicated discount in emails throughout June at UK retailers. In lieu of Prime Day, which has become the unofficial kick-off of Back-to-School sales, the Big Style Sale gave retailers an incentive to reduce products earlier to compete.
The Prime Day that wasn’t
Early in July, Amazon alerted third-party sellers to use the week of October 5th as a placeholder date for Prime Day. However, a confirmed date is still up in the air with the e-tailer postponing the event, stating it will soon share ‘more details.’ Despite the ambiguity and summer sales starting earlier, retailers went ahead with Prime-esque offers at the back end of July, communicating similar messaging to last year such as ‘Black Friday in July,’ ‘Cyber Sales,’ and 48-hour deals.
Lessons learned in 2019
• More retailers are getting involved in the event than ever before. The number of products discounted within the past six weeks increased by 30% in the US and 23% in the UK YoY.
• Although 2019 saw a lower average discount depth YoY, customers responded well to discounts between 40-50%. Consider utilizing this higher discount range for hard-to-move or older products to preserve margin.
• Peak messaging for Prime Day emails was on the second day of sales (Tuesday 16th Jul). Interestingly, the next most popular day to promote the event was the Sunday (14th Jul) before the sale kicked off. For 2020, consider advertising ‘get ready’ or ‘coming soon’ messages to create hype before the event.
• Blanket discounts of 20% and up to 50% off were favored for communications alongside price pointed offers and basket codes. For a more impactful result, consider advertising newly discounted stock for the big event.
• For retailers cautious about using the word ‘Prime’ in sale messaging, focus on advertising the event as a ‘Black Friday in July’ or ‘Cyber Sale.’
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