Amazon will hold its second annual Prime Day on July 12, promising more than 100,000 deals exclusively for its 50+ million Prime members worldwide. With new deals starting every five minutes, shoppers will be tuning in, hunting for the best deals. But it’s not just Amazon sellers who will benefit from the spike in ecommerce traffic. Prime Day will be a boon to all retailers, as shoppers will be comparing prices on various sites and marketplaces.
With sales largely going digital, companies like Walmart and eBay are increasing their investments in ecommerce. Even Pinterest, a social network, is rebuilding itself as an ecommerce platform.
Why You Need to Gear Up for Prime Day (Even If You Don’t Sell on Amazon)
Last year’s Prime Day sales exceeded Black Friday sales by 18%, becoming the biggest event for Amazon sales internationally. Given the success of this promotion, Amazon merchants this year should start preparing in anticipation of the spike in traffic. Amazon sellers should stock up on inventory and consider pricing even non-Prime eligible items competitively.
And it’s not just Amazon sellers who benefits from Prime Day. According to performance marketing company HookLogic, various retailers and marketplaces experienced nearly double the daily traffic during last year’s Prime Day. Companies like Walmart, Target, Best Buy, Staples and Kohl’s all received a boost in sales. Overall conversions were higher by 16% compared to the previous week.
Multi-channel retailers with automated repricing strategies will win on Prime Day. Shoppers worldwide will be looking for deals across marketplaces, so it’s important to keep prices low and offer deals they can’t resist.
Walmart Rivals Amazon with Prime-like Shipping Program and Improved Online Experiences
Walmart is offering a free 30-day trial of ShippingPass, its answer to Amazon’s successful Prime program. ShippingPass costs $49 a year, compared to Prime’s $99 subscription plan. It includes free two-day shipping with no minimum order value. This is part of Walmart’s series of savings events this month.
Walmart also finished completing a major overhaul of its website. With 88 million unique visitors per month, Walmart.com is the second most visited ecommerce site in the US. The overhaul was done to handle more variety, provide more information on each product, and better support third-party merchants.
The retailer also rolled out WalmartPay in more than 600 stores. The app hopes to ease mobile purchasing and encourage online shopping at Walmart.com. Will Walmart be able to chip off some of Amazon’s momentum? Only time will tell.
eBay’s New Partnership Lets U.S. Merchants Sell Easily in a Growing African Market
eBay recently announced its partnership with MallforAfrica.com, an online shipping and payments platform. This move, known as “eBay Powered by MallforAfrica,” will enable eBay merchants to sell their products in Africa without worrying about trade tariffs, payments, regulations or logistics.
MallforAfrica will take care of logistics, shipping and delivery via its own processing center in Portland, Oregon. MallforAfrica.com will also handle payments for eBay products, accepting both local currency and digital payments. U.S. sellers will receive the agreed transaction price in U.S. dollars.
This new venture offers interesting possibilities for eBay sellers as they naturally benefit from an enlarged customer base. According to eBay, “the experience will be seamless for a U.S. based seller and will feel as though they are selling to a U.S. buyer.”
Pinterest Remakes Itself as an eCommerce-Centric Platform
Pinterest is a social network best known for providing inspiration, but with the launch of its new features, it’s clear that the network is turning into an ecommerce platform. Pinterest recently launched “Shopping with Pinterest,” a number of commerce and visual search features that make it easier for consumers to find, research and buy products from any device.
Buyable pins, which were previously limited to mobile apps, are now available on Pinterest.com. The platform hopes to become a universal shopping bag, which lets users view and add multiple items to their Pinterest shopping cart. Users can switch from one device to another and check out on any device when they’re ready.
Pinterest’s ecommerce push highlights the role of social commerce in influencing purchasing decisions. According to Mary Meeker’s Internet Trends of 2016, 55% of Pinterest users shop or find products on the social network. It’s time for retailers to develop a strong social media strategy to engage where their customers are.