The fourth-annual Amazon Prime Day is in the books and it is Amazon.com Inc.’s biggest sales event ever.
Amazon doesn’t disclose sales figures on Prime Day, but Internet Retailer estimates sales hit $4.19 billion globally this year during the 36-hour sale July 16-17, up nearly 74% from $2.41 billion during last year’s Prime Day (a 30-hour sales event July 11-12, 2017). Comparatively, in 2017 Amazon grew its overall Prime Day sales by 60% over the 24-hour Prime Day 2016 sales event.
Amazon doesn’t disclose sales figure on Prime Day, but it did say the event was the biggest sales day ever for the company. Taking that into consideration, here’s Internet Retailer’s data analysis of Prime Day.
1. Total sales on Amazon Prime Day, 2015-2018
Several factors contributed to the high growth in sales this year. For one, the Prime Day sale lasted 36 hours this year, six hours longer than last year’s 30-hour sale. Prime Day also extended into Whole Foods Markets stores, which Amazon now owns, where Prime members received an extra 10% off a selection of products.
Second, Prime Day was held in 17 countries this year, up from 13 countries a year ago. The markets new to Prime Day 2018 were Australia, Singapore, Netherlands and Luxembourg. These countries joined the U.S., U.K., Spain, Mexico, Japan, India, Italy, Germany, France, China, Canada, Belgium and Austria.
Third, Amazon has more Prime members this year than it did last year, widening the pool of potential Prime Day customers. Prime Day deals are only available to members of Amazon’s Prime loyalty program, which now costs $119 annually for U.S. consumers. Amazon earlier this year confirmed it has more than 100 million Prime members worldwide. Although the company did not specify a year-over-year comparison, Hitwise (a part of digital marketing firm Connexity Inc.) says Amazon signs up roughly 200,000 new Prime members per month.
2. How does Prime Day compare with other online shopping holidays around the world?
Prime Day gained ground on major U.S. e-commerce shopping holidays Cyber Monday and Black Friday, but all three U.S. days have some major catching up to do with Chinese online marketplace giant Alibaba Group Holding Ltd. Its annual Singles’ Day shopping event, a one-day sale held annually on Nov. 11, generated more than $25 billion in sales last year, outpacing Cyber Monday nearly fourfold.
3. Marketplace sales vs. Amazon’s own products
Amazon says sales by marketplace merchants “far exceeded” $1 billion during the 36-hour sales event. Internet Retailer estimates marketplace sellers’ sales account for more than a third of total Prime Day sales. Many of Prime Day’s most-hyped and best-selling products are Amazon products. For instance, Amazon’s Fire TV Stick and Echo Dot were the retailer’s best sellers worldwide. Plus, items sold by Amazon are traditionally higher-dollar values than third-party sellers, says retail analytics firm One Click Retail.
4. The potential cost of Amazon’s Prime Day technical glitches? $72.6 million
The sales event wasn’t without issues, as many shoppers saw error messages and broken landing pages when the deals first went live on July 16. Many shoppers couldn’t add items to their cart or had to try several times to checkout. Within a few hours, Amazon fixed the issues. Internet Retailer estimates the sales Amazon lost during the technical difficulties was around $72.6 million.
This likely impacted Amazon’s conversion rate as well, as its conversion rate increased a modest 4.5% to 11.7% on Monday (when the technical issues occurred), up from 11.2% on the previous Monday, July 9, according to data from marketing analytics firm Jumpshot. Comparatively, Amazon’s conversion rate on Tuesday, July 17 (second day of Prime Day), averaged 15.5%, a nearly 40% increase over the previous Tuesday, July 10. One reason why the conversion rate could have been lower than expected is because traffic to Amazon.com was so high at the start of the sale.
5. How many consumers shopped on Prime Day and what did they buy?
Nearly 28% of U.S. online shoppers made a purchase on Prime Day this year, according to an exclusive Internet Retailer and Toluna survey of 1,006 online consumers conducted July 18-19. Internet Retailer asked shoppers the same question last year in an exclusive survey with Bizrate Insights. In that survey, 21.8% of online shoppers said they made a purchase on Prime Day 2017.
For more information on Amazon Prime and Amazon Prime Day, check out the 2018 Amazon Report. The report is available for download to Digital Commerce 360 Gold and Platinum members. Single-copy sales are also available.
Allison Enright and April Berthene contributed to this report.