Amazon held its third annual Prime Day event last week and while it proved a bonanza for the eCommerce giant, it was a big boon to Amazon’s third-party sellers. Nothing illustrates the ripple effect of a popular sales events more than Amazon Prime Day.
For starters, Amazon reported a 60% increase in sales compared to the same event in 2016. This was good news for Amazon Sellers who, according to PAYMNTS, by July 12 had sold 50% more items than the same time-frame last year.
In other words, Prime Day was a bonanza for Amazon and to the people who sell on its marketplaces.
Amazon Prime Day: How Big is Big?
How big was this year’s Prime Day? Hard to tell, but Internet Retailer predicted sales during the 30-hour event between July 11 and July 12 would reach $1.56 billion, a 20% jump over its prediction for the 2016 event. Follow-up numbers suggest the predictions were on target.
An annual Internet Retailer survey of 1,393 online shoppers showed that nearly 22% made a purchase on Amazon.com on Prime Day, a 19.4% year-over-year increase. If there are 244 million online shoppers in the US, the survey suggests 53 million people bought something on Amazon on Prime Day.
As much as Prime Day helped third-party sellers, Amazon, of course, was the biggest winner. You can view Prime Day as both a sales promotion and a membership drive, but it’s all about Amazon Prime Customers. For $99 a year, Prime membership gives consumers special sales deals and shipping. So, Prime Day was about driving customer loyalty and attracting new Prime customers.
Amazon announced it that “more new members joined Prime on July 11 than on any single day in Amazon history.” And “tens of millions of Prime members made a purchase on Prime Day 2017, more than 50 percent higher than the prior year.”
The Shifting Landscape
Amazon Prime Day encapsulates the difficulty big traditional retailers have adjusting to the reality of eCommerce.
As Fortune reported, the event was partly responsible for a sell-off of stock in retail companies. Big chains lost between 6.3% and 7.2% of their capitalization overnight on July 12. This, in a year already marked by record closures and bankruptcies in the retail industry.
Retail, however, is not dead. The big retail chains invested in high volume sales and foot-traffic do contract or disappear. But, retail survives when it strikes a balance between eCommerce and physical stores.
Brand manufacturers will still sell their stock in physical retail channels and online marketplaces like Amazon.
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