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Amazon Prime Day 2020: Key takeaways and way forward

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For most sellers on India, Prime Day was a way to recover from the recent slump. 77 percent sellers participated in the event for the first time and 68 percent new product launches took place, as per a research by Nielsen. Evidently, this was one of the first massive sales events on , since the outbreak. That said, now is the time for you to not just evaluate how your products fared, but also determine how key learnings can be incorporated into your overall strategy for flagship events.

Amazon Prime Day 2020: Key takeaways and way forward

First things first, let’s take a look at the vital parameters to measure performance:

– Best Hour of the Day – Critically analyze the 48-hour period to understand the peak hours for your product. Considering most of your audience was working from home, the expected shopping time may have been all through the day. However, there may have been clear jumps during a certain hour when most people tend to take some time off, possibly a chai break. On the contrary, for more expensive items like electronics which don’t experience impulse buying, the golden hour may have been some time in the late evening after deliberating over a variety of choices.

– Sessions, Page Views & Conversion Rate – Surge in page views and sessions indicates interest in the product. A low conversion rate, however, suggests that the interest is not sustained. A possible reason could be a lack of crucial product information or establishment of the product story could also drive down conversions. Alternatively, you may have experienced brand gating wherein competitors with lower pricing and higher rating advertised on your product page and drove away potential buyers.

– Overall Spends and ACoS – Various factors could have influenced sales through Sponsored Product, Sponsored Brand and Display campaigns. It is critical that you analyze not only which products fared better in terms of ACoS, but also how much you had to spend on them to sustain the campaign budget through the sale period. Additionally, evaluate whether top of search or product page placements worked more effectively for you.

– New to Brand Traffic – Sponsored Brand campaigns can help in analyzing the effectiveness of your campaigns for bringing in first time customers. If the new to brand (NTB) metric is higher than average, your Sponsored Brand strategy can be tweaked and scaled up accordingly for high traffic events.

– Sales and Profitability – This extravagant event doesn’t come cheap for sellers. However, remarkably high traffic and a greater likelihood of conversion means advertising spend and product price must have overridden profitability. These lessons can be applied to other sale events where brands must focus on the long game by building product awareness and gaining repeat buyers at full price in the weeks afterward.

– Average Order Value and Sizes – Determine how much your target customers are willing to spend during high traffic days despite the current scenario. This can guide your inventory planning and bundling strategies for future events. Furthermore, if you have just introduced size variants, now would be the time to retrospect which one to leverage to drive the customer into your ecosystem of products.

– Deal Order Rate – Sellers must have experienced a varied range of deal order rates depending on the categories they belong. While it’s obvious that most consumers actively look for deals during this period, deals were sought after for high ticket items such as well as lower ASP products. Identify the winning products in your catalogue and new front runners. Allow your winners to run and support your low performing products to grow.

– Coupon Consumption – Understanding the frequency and scale of coupons deployed can help you get a better handle on how to maximize profit during high-traffic periods. Evaluate the usage of coupons for each product type during the sale period. Track if direct discounts performed better than coupons in driving sales. This will guide your coupons strategy over different products during high traffic periods.

So what next? Regardless of whether you’ve raked in revenue through Prime Day or had a rough run, here’s how you can make sense of the event:

Sellers who have tasted success:

– Identify your winning products and use them to explore upselling and cross-selling opportunities. For instance, if you identified that a particular flavor of cereal performed better than usual, you can consider introducing a bigger pack that can help drive up average cart value and save costs. In addition to this, you can also explore using the sponsored products section of your high traffic product pages, to secure real estate for new launches. This is also a way to protect it from getting taken over by competitor brands and losing sales opportunities.

– Understand whether discounts were directly proportional to popularity. Based on the percentage distribution, if you infer that the need for aggressive pricing on highly popular products is not strong, then you can focus on offering higher discounts on less or moderately popular products instead.

– Once you have identified the most popular time of day for your product during sale days, you can increase your bids when customers are most likely to convert to get a better return per click. Similarly, reduce your bids and allow competitors to win over you during the lowest chances of conversions.

– While evaluating your overall ROI, keep in mind the threshold for marketing investment of new launches. This could help in guiding your pace of growth for scaling up new products prior to massive shopping events.

Sellers who were new to the event or didn’t match the expected sales:

– Focus on the main objective of your campaigns for sale days. If the goal is to gain new customers or market share, budget must be allocated to brand awareness campaigns. Amazon finds potential customers who have shown interest in a category based on their browsing behavior. On the other hand, if you want to increase the number of regular buyers, I recommend investing in both brand awareness and retargeting campaigns.

– Identify the right product to be promoted through ads. Knowing the frenzy that goes on during sale days, your bulk packs and bigger size variants would instinctively be more popular. Since the margins would also be higher on these, you can maximize this opportunity with aggressive pricing and ads strategy.

– Ensure your listings are sale ready. High traffic doesn’t always translate into a high conversion rate. A lot of times, this can be traced back to poor-quality images, ineffective copy or incomplete product details. Optimize content to make it compelling and easy-to-read.

– Go gung-ho on all channels to drive traffic to Amazon. Leverage prime real estate on your website and social media platforms to announce your prime-exclusive deals and discounts. This will also help in setting the right expectations for potential buyers.

The bottom line is, not every seller may have experienced exponential sales numbers despite significant traffic on the platform. Whether Prime Day was a success or a failure for you, monitor your performance immaculately using the right metrics and let the key learnings help you lay a solid foundation to increase sales during upcoming shopping events.