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Saturday, July 24, 2021

Was Amazon’s Prime Day 2021 discount battle less successful?

Unsurprisingly, Prime Day, the two-day shopping event of the online giant Amazon, was also successful in 2021. But the wording in the official press release makes you sit up and take notice.

• Amazon’s shopping event resulted in 250 million articles sold
• Press release formulated in a conspicuously cautious manner
• Weaker growth?

“Prime Day brought the two biggest days of all time for small and medium-sized businesses to Amazon’s stores worldwide, the area grew even faster than Amazon Retail and members saved more than on any previous Prime Day”. With these words, the online group Amazon heralds this year’s press release for Prime Day, which took place on June 21st and 22nd. The sales event, which offers millions of bargains for members of Amazon’s Prime membership program, has been taking place since 2015 and the US company often announced new superlatives after the event. This year the balance sheet is once again positive, but the group is noticeably reticent when it comes to language – for the second year in a row.

250 million items sold

The official press release states that Amazon Prime customers bought 250 million items worldwide on the two Prime Day days. During the promotional period, which started two weeks before the official event, customers bought 70 million products from small businesses, which generated sales of 1.9 billion US dollars. Compared to the previous year, this corresponds to a doubling of sales, as the company announced. During the two-week promotional period, customers who purchased products for at least US $ 10 from small Amazon sellers received a US $ 10 voucher to redeem on Prime Day.
Products from the electronics sector and Amazon devices were particularly popular during the two super shopping days, and school items were also high on the buyers’ popularity list, as the press release further shows. In Germany and Austria, for example, the Samsung Galaxy Tab A7 Android tablet, the Beurer BR 60 insect sting healer and Tanqueray Blackcurrant Royale Distilled Gin were among the bestsellers.
And services from the Amazon universe were also popular during the shopping event: Special promotions on Amazon Music would have ensured that more people would have opted for the unlimited version of Amazon’s music streaming service than on any other Prime Day before .

All in all, these were the two biggest days of all time for small and medium-sized companies in Amazon stores worldwide, customers could have saved more than ever before, the company summarises.

Hard to read superlatives

Amazon once again did not provide specific sales figures for Prime Day itself, but last year the group had at least disclosed the sales figures for third-party providers. The e-commerce giant completely renounced this in 2021.
Nevertheless, total sales are likely to have increased again compared to the previous year. According to data from Adobe’s Digital Economy Index, Amazon posted an increase in sales of 8.7 percent on the first day alone and achieved revenues of 5.6 billion US dollars. But growth is likely to have weakened – possibly one of the reasons why Amazon is noticeably reluctant to use superlatives in its press release.

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Already in the previous year, analysts at Citigroup noticed that the key words used in the press release were more subdued than in previous years. While there was talk of the “biggest day of all time” and the “biggest shopping event in the history of Amazon” from 2016 to 2019, the wording on Prime Day 2020 and 2021 was much more cautious.
Nevertheless, experts assume that Prime Day should be seen as a success for the Internet giant, even if there was possibly no above-average increase in sales compared to the previous year. Adobe Analytics estimates total sales during the promotional period at over US $ 11 billion – an estimated increase of around six percent year-on-year.
According to CNBC, supply chain issues may have contributed to its more subdued success in 2021. Many third-party providers felt among other things the global shortage of chips but also the increase in COVID-19 cases in two of the largest ports in China. In addition, some sellers would have chosen to offer fewer Prime Day discounts because of insufficient inventory.

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