Prime Day not just for Prime members anymore
- Shoppers are increasingly viewing Prime Day as a midsummer sale day not limited to Amazon, research shows. For example, 43% say they anticipate Prime Day deals not just from Amazon but also Amazon-owned companies (like Zappos) and 45% say deals from Whole Foods are "likely" or "very likely," according to a study from global consulting firm AlixPartners emailed to Retail Dive.
- A majority (63%) of consumers, Prime and non-Prime members alike, say they plan to shop Amazon on Prime Day this year, and 50% said they made a purchase there last year. But 39% say they’ll look for bargains at retailers other than Amazon that day, up eight percentage points from the 31% who said so last year.
- That’s partly because retailers themselves are refusing to cede the event to Amazon, according to research from coupon site RetailMeNot, with more than half (54%) planning Prime Day deals. It’s a lesson from last year, when retailers that didn’t participate in Prime Day saw a 4% drop to their RetailMeNot.com pages, while those competing saw online traffic rise more than 30%, according to that study, which was emailed to Retail Dive. Last year, a whopping 96% of consumer website demand on RetailMeNot.com was driven by retailers other than Amazon, the company said.
Prime Day is obviously a boon to Amazon itself, but the day is also shaping up to offer up a virtuous cycle for non-Amazon retailers. Those with Prime Day-adjacent promotions not only capture sales, but also add to the growing sense that Prime Day, like Black Friday, is a chance to save money at a lot of sites and stores.
The day, which this year is just Amazon's fourth, already enjoys a level of awareness that rivals Black Friday, according to AlixPartners. While 88% of those surveyed said they’re aware of Black Friday and 81% are aware of Cyber Monday, 60% said they're aware of Prime Day. By contrast, just 7% said they're aware of Alibaba’s "Singles Day," Alix found.
It's not like Amazon is losing much to the competition. More than three-quarters (77%) of Amazon Prime members say they plan to shop on Amazon during that time, according to AlixPartners. But nearly all (95%) who plan on shopping on Prime Day say they'll do online research, and that's "a tremendous opportunity" for other retailers that figure out how to take advantage of it, according to David Bassuk, AlixPartners global co-head of the retail practice and managing director. Nearly half (47 of 100) of the largest non-Amazon retailers offered limited-time sales or messaging that included the word ‘Prime,’ he said in a statement.
"Even simple marketing steps such as that can make a big difference," he said. "But the Holy Grail is offering consumers a frictionless shopping experience that, while not attempting to compete with Amazon head-on, nonetheless offers the consumer an 'Amazon-like' experience but one that’s true to your own unique brand."
RetailMeNot offered some clues from Prime Day activity last year, when the number of unique retailers issuing deals on RetailMeNot.com rose 340%, from 27 retailers in 2016 to 119 retailers in 2017. Prime Day deals consisted of distinct messaging strategies: coupon codes that included the word "PRIME," and offers that used phrases like "Prime Time," "Black Friday in July" and "Cyber Monday in July." Such deals were characterized by short-lived availability, aggressive discounts, sitewide codes and free shipping.
The AlixPartners 2018 Amazon Prime Day Consumer Survey and Outlook was conducted July 2 to July 3 with 1,124 U.S consumers, across all regions, demographics and income levels.
- Retail Dive 9 things to watch for on Prime Day 2018
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