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Amazon Prime Day: What Retailers Are Doing To Prepare

Posted at 2:07 PM, Jun 26, 2019

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Now that we know Amazon Prime Day has turned into a two-day shopping extravaganza, it’s safe to say that this year’s event promises to be a certifiable Big Deal — and not just for consumers.

Shoppers bought more than 100 million items through the behemoth online retailer on Prime Day in 2018, which lasted 36 hours. (Among the top sellers: Instant Pots and stand mixers.) With 12 extra hours of deals in 2019, the purveyors of those goods have their work cut out for them before Black Friday-in-July hits our browsers.

Some of that work is already done. Sellers had to have their Prime Day inventory shipped to fulfillment centers by Amazon’s deadline of June 27 this year, but even that may not be enough time.

Ahead of Prime Day, Amazon gets backed up.

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“What some sellers may not realize is that Amazon takes much longer than usual to check in shipments throughout June and July,” Aditya Patel, founder of organic beauty line InstaNatural, told Forbes at the end of May. “It’s best to stock up now to prepare as much as possible before inbound shipment timing slows to a crawl.”

Once their inventory is shipped to Amazon, sellers have just a few weeks for another sprint — updating their online stores with fresh images and better language, including keywords all of those Prime Day shoppers could be using to search for goods.

An analysis of Prime Day at Digital Commerce 360 noted that even though the sale feels like a chance for sellers to cash in on impulse buys, the reality is that consumers are taking time to read reviews and examine ratings before they make their purchases.

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Having even just one review on a product page increased the chances a buyer would add to cart, and product pages with at least one review had a 446% increase in revenue per view over products with no reviews. The advice to sellers: Solicit more reviews ahead of Prime Day by offering samples in exchange for reviews.

Sellers also promote their Prime Day deals elsewhere and set up their own coupons on Amazon to get more eyes on their products, according to Forbes.

Though Prime Day requires months of prep for sellers, they’re not the only beneficiaries of the boom. Amazon’s own electronics products have been among the bestsellers on past Prime Days. Their Echo Dot was the most popular item worldwide on Prime Day for the past two years running.

Other retailers get a bump from Prime Day, too. Target, Walmart and eBay all offered deals during Prime Day in 2018, and Target announced after Prime Day was over that it was their biggest online shopping day of the year. (Of course, Prime Day is in July, so Black Friday hadn’t happened yet — if they’re counting from the calendar year.)

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Getty Images | Leon Neal

Meanwhile, Amazon is probably hoping they don’t have another tech glitch that stops shoppers from doing their thing. When this happened last year on Prime Day, some analysts estimated that the outage cost the company $90 million or more, according to TechCrunch.

Prime Day 2019 runs all day July 15 and July 16. Sellers, get ready! And shoppers, make your list, and be sure you’re ready to snag the deals.

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