Amazon Prime Day 2020 kickstarts a mega-peak in discounting

Amazon’s Prime Day brouhaha

With the pandemic shifting back Amazon Prime Day by three months – kickstarting a mega-peak in discounting at the beginning of October – this year’s Black Friday and Cyber Monday weekend is set to be the most competitive peak period in UK retail history. In light of this, according to James Allen-Lewis of Sonassi, retailers must make the necessary preparations for a fatigue in consumer spending and invest heavily in their online experience if they wish to remain competitive this quarter.

The vast competition surrounding this year’s Amazon Prime Day is exemplified by recent research from Love the Sales which discovered that the volume of online discounts this October is already up by 23 per cent from last year. A recent survey by Digital Commerce 360 also found that 21 per cent of consumers will begin their holiday shopping a month earlier this year, which forces us to consider the detrimental impact on consumer spending in the coming months.

Allen-Lewis explains: “With greater discounts over a longer period of time and retailers battling for consumer’s attention, Amazon Prime Day has set the mood for this year’s peak period and beyond. Squeezing together three of the biggest sales periods is likely to result in consumers suffering a fatigue in spending, meaning retailers will have to fight harder than usual to remain competitive in the coming months.

“This sense of uncertainty should not deter merchants from implementing their sales strategies this Black Friday and Cyber Monday. However, they must go further than simply providing online discounts and tackle challenges head-on by re-focusing their efforts on creating a highly competitive user experience. Successful merchants will make the necessary preparations for a change in consumer demand and invest more heavily in their eCommerce infrastructure.

“One way in which retailers can do this is by using this year’s Amazon Prime Day as a case study to inspire their future response. For example, retailers should take note of the key consumer behaviours that transpired throughout this year’s mega peak in discounting and plan accordingly for the upcoming Black Friday and Cyber-Monday weekend.

“Tactics such as providing the ultimate online delivery service and secure payment methods will also be pivotal for retailers looking to survive a fatigue in online spending. Consumers will look to retailers who do not overpromise on items like next-day delivery and ensure their checkout process is safe and frictionless for all. It is the retailers who embrace this fact and meet the needs of the conscious consumer that will win their share of consumers wallets.

Allen-Lewis concludes: “Amazon Prime Day 2020 has undoubtedly turned this year’s peak period on its head. Sales begun early, competition has intensified, consumer behaviours have advanced and, most importantly, customer spending is expected to fatigue. Yet, retailers should not simply back away from these challenges. With Black Friday and the build-up to Christmas just around the corner, retailers must adapt to these changes, invest more heavily in their eCommerce infrastructure and focus their efforts on creating the ultimate online experience.”

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