Amazon.com Inc. and Walmart.com are stirring up consumers’ bargain-hunting tendencies with its sale promotions today, but some of North America’s other top e-retailers are positioning themselves to benefit by offering steep, sometimes storewide, discounts as well.
Teen apparel retailer Aeropostale Inc., No. 150 in the Internet Retailer Top 500 Guide, is promoting a one-day “Prime Time Sale” today offering free shipping on all orders and sale prices up to 50% off everything on the site. Macy’s Inc., No. 7, meanwhile, is hosting a “surprise specials day” offering hundreds of discounted products today only. It too will ship all orders at no charge; this is the first time Macy’s has offered free shipping with no minimum purchase, according to its email promotion for the sale.
“We are excited to offer our customers such a compelling opportunity, especially during a month in which we typically do not see a tremendous number of innovative customer-facing promotional options,” a Macy’s spokeswoman says.
Loft.com, a division of Ann Inc., No. 94 in the Top 500 Guide, is promoting a one-day “50% off pretty much everything” sale to customers today, while Gap.com, part of No. 18 Gap Inc., is hosting a one-day 40% off consumers’ entire purchase sale with the promo code DEAL. Home goods e-retailer Horchow.com, a division of No. 43-ranked Neiman Marcus, also is hosting a one-day sale of 25-30% off site-wide.
JC Penney Co. Inc., No. 37, which routinely offers discount-based promotions in the 10- 20% range, boosted its discount today, offering web shoppers an extra 10-25% off select items with the code 1DAYONLY. It also lowered the order value threshold to get free shipping to $49 from $99.
Electronics e-retailer Newegg Inc., No. 17, is hosting a 24-hour “Fantastech Sale,” offering discounts on more than 100 selected products and free shipping. A Lenovo tablet computer, for example, is $399.99, a 52% discount from a list of $829.99. A spokesman says the Fantastech sale is looking to get in on the action stirred by Prime Day.
Meanwhile, smaller retailers are mounting their own response to Amazon’s Prime Day. Cotton Bureau, an e-retailer of artist-designed T-shirts, is taking to social media with the hashtag #buysmall, to encourage consumers to shop with small or independent business. It’s offering free T-shirts to brands or consumers who spread the word by using the hashtag in their posts.
Chad White, research director at email services firm Litmus and a longtime watcher of e-retailer sales and promotional activity, says the responses by other e-retailers in offering promotions demonstrates Amazon’s power in the marketplace. “Clearly these retailers want to be competitive with Amazon today in order to benefit from and deflate the attention Amazon is bringing to itself,” he says. “At the same time, it seems that by responding to Prime Day like this they’re allowing Amazon to wag the Internet.”