Amazon’s large marketing and PR teams do an incredible job getting the word out about Prime Day. Do what you can to use their successful efforts to your advantage.

Terri Mock, chief revenue officer, Ve Interactive

Terri Mock, chief revenue officer, Ve Interactive

Since 2015, the e-commerce behemoth has posted incredible sales stats from its July event. In fact, last year Amazon reported that Prime Day was its biggest sales day ever, dwarfing Black Friday and Cyber Monday. It looks like this year’s Prime Day will be just as much of a hit, with more than 70 percent of online shoppers in the U.S. planning to participate.

Smaller e-retailers might be tempted to wave the white flag. Looking at how effectively Amazon has used Prime Day to capture shoppers’ minds and wallets, trying to compete with a summer sale might feel like a lost cause.

I’d argue that this mentality is misguided. While Amazon will certainly reap significant benefits from its 2017 Prime Day, they have also done the e-commerce industry a favor in getting more consumers used to the idea of hunting for online deals in July.

Smart shoppers will hunt for bargains even on Prime Day.

That’s why I’d encourage e-tailers to host their own “Christmas in July” one day sales event. Here are a few tips for how to get started:


Leverage Prime Day messaging

Amazon’s large marketing and PR teams have done an incredible job getting the word out about Prime Day. Do what you can to use their successful efforts to your advantage.

For instance, making a reference to Prime Day in your July campaign messaging could help encourage shoppers to check out your site. Consider drafting language for your marketing emails and display ads such as, “Our sales will make Prime Day look expensive,” or, “Prime Day might be over, but our sales event has just begun!”

Make an offer in your marketing emails that shoppers can’t refuse

Consumers’ inboxes are flooded with marketing emails from their favorite retailers. If you really want your one day sale’s event to stand out, you need to make a truly enticing pitch. Ideally, your promotions will also make financial sense for your company. A few ideas on how to do this include:

  • Discounts on summer items that you need to move – If you find that you have an abundance of a certain seasonal product, consider pricing it at a deep discount for one day only.
  • Incentives that encourage repeat customers – Particularly if you’re selling items that people need to purchase frequently, consider giving both a percentage discount during your one-day event, as well as a discount coupon with each purchase that can be used at a later date. Not only will this entice customers to buy now, but it will also encourage them to shop at your e-store again in the future.
  • Free gifts – If you can offer a free gift with each purchase that is both relatively inexpensive for you to give away, and desirable for customers, this is another great option for a one-day sale’s event promotion.
  • Beating Amazon’s pricing – Smart shoppers will hunt for bargains even on Prime Day. If you offer a good promotion, they will spot your real deal versus a paper bargain from Amazon. Also, if one of your products happened to be featured on Amazon Prime Day, consider hosting your sale’s event the week after, and offering the product at either the same price or a slightly better one.

Once you get shoppers to your site, make sure that you have the tools in place to close the deal

Getting shoppers to your site through marketing emails and display ads is only half the battle. Once consumers start browsing, you must take additional steps to help them convert.

For starters, when a customer tries to abandon, make sure that you have an on-site engagement solution to help keep her on your site. In your onsite engagement messaging, you can mention that this is a one day sales event, and all items will revert to their regular prices by midnight. You could even offer an extra incentive such as free shipping.

When customers do abandon their shopping carts, have a re-marketing campaign in place to remind them at least once before the end of the day that their items will be more expensive if they buy them tomorrow. Messaging that highlights the time sensitivity will encourage some shoppers to come back and complete their purchase. If you don’t have a customer’s email address, consider pursuing an aggressive one day display ad retargeting campaign, which could include graphics such as a countdown clock to midnight.

For those of you who are reading this and haven’t followed in Amazon’s footsteps of putting together a July sales campaign, take advantage of this huge promotional opportunity. If Prime Day shopping trends continue, the e-commerce industry will stop viewing July as a slow month, and instead as a month with revenue numbers that rival typical November stats.


Based in the United Kingdom, Ve Interactive is a provider of online marketing and advertising services.