Retailers afraid of Amazon’s growth can take consolation in the fact that Prime Day was not the resounding success of last year. Anticipation was high but sales were flat in the US and many customers complained on social media about checkout problems.
Fashion and Apparel brands also failed to benefit from the occasion. Brands in these categories failed to sell a large number of products despite promoting Prime Day deals more than usual, according to L2 research.
On Prime Day, there were more than 1,300 Active and Upcoming deals in Men’s and Women’s Clothing and Fashion– a sharp increase from the average day in June, when only 100 Unique Deals existed in those categories. This suggests Fashion and Clothing sellers and brands were looking to leverage Prime Day.
However, only 13 men’s and six women’s deals had been completely claimed at the time of data collection. Furthermore, 15 of those deals were for watches or sunglasses – often licensed products not sold directly by brands.
Furthermore, clothing was a slow seller: the average clothing deal sold less than a quarter of available stock. At the time of data collection, the 12 clothing deals with the largest discounts had only sold 28% and with less than two hours remaining, it was unlikely they would exhaust that inventory.
Amazon may benefit from Prime Day by driving Prime signups rather than sales. Last year’s Prime Day saw the largest-ever single-day increase in Prime memberships, and Prime members now outnumber the company’s regular customers in its home market for the first time. And to those members, annual free shipping may be more important than discounts.