Due to the COVID-19 pandemic, Amazon Prime Days 2020 are underway today and tomorrow. October 13 and 14. Originally scheduled for one day in July, Amazon moved the event. Sales projections are strong. However, this year Amazon faces more intense competition.
To see the origins of Amazon Prime Day, created in 2015, click here.
Shopping During Amazon Prime Days 2020
For this post, we turn to two sources — eMarketer and Business Insider.
In our first-ever forecast for Prime Day, we expect Amazon will generate $9.91 billion in sales worldwide. That includes $6.17 billion in the United States. Consumers will continue to spend heavily on E-commerce and actively seek deals heading into the holiday season.
“While demand will be strong, the event will be more difficult to plan for than in previous years,” said Andrew Lipsman, eMarketer principal analyst at Insider Intelligence and author of “Amazon Prime Day 2020.”
“Since Prime Day’s 2015 debut, Amazon has expanded the scale and spectacle of the event in a mostly predictable fashion,” he said. “The generally incremental changes from year to year gave customers and sellers a better sense of what to expect, with Lightning Deals and heavily discounted Echos and Fire TVs taking center stage. Sellers developed a playbook for their promotions and advertising strategy and could plan their inventory accordingly.”
But the pandemic threw everything for a loop. Supply chains are challenged, inventory forecasting is unpredictable, and consumer demand is fluctuating wildly. Amazon’s decision to move Prime Day from mid-July to October has only thrown a bigger wrench into seasonal spending patterns, leaving retailers and sellers awash with uncertainty.
Amazon faces competitive challenges. Since Target and Walmart have launched coinciding online sales events. Target’s annual Deal Days include online deals, curbside pickup, and same-day delivery for most products. Walmart’s sales event runs from October 11–15. And they offer online deals with equally fast delivery. Countering Prime Day is a strategy retailers have used in the past to mixed results. But this time, the various deals could push customers to shop around to find the best offers.
That’s especially true because Amazon experienced severe delivery delays at the height of the pandemic that eroded its market share. Representing a challenge that Target and Walmart easily sidestepped because of their ability to use retail locations as distribution centers. Fast delivery and flexible pickup might be a key component of consumer purchases during the sales events, which could create bigger competitive challenges for Amazon this year than in the past.