Update, June 21, 2023: This year’s summer Prime Day (and yes, there may be a fall PD blitz too) has been confirmed as July 11-12, 2023. Happy selling (and shopping)!
Prime Day began as an anniversary celebration and has since altered the holiday shopping schedule across all of retail (not just e-commerce). Amazon has trained buyers and sellers well, with both anticipating July Prime Day deals galore. Amazon has historically released the Prime Day dates with fewer than four weeks to prepare. This means that sellers should start preparing early. Here’s what we know about Prime Day in 2023.
The Evolution of Amazon Prime Day
The first Amazon Prime Day event was on July 15, 2015. It was an anniversary celebration of 20 years of Amazon. This shopping event lasted 24 hours and was available to shoppers in nine countries.
Since that first event in 2015, Prime Day has expanded to a two-day event, available to shoppers in more than 20 countries. The shopping holiday has become so successful, in fact, that Amazon released a Prime Early Access Sale in October 2022, leading up to the Q4 holidays (and looking VERY similar to the summer Prime Day event).
The shopping holiday has become such a success that its sales have surpassed that of Black Friday and Cyber Monday consistently. In fact, it has become a staple of the retail calendar, with stores like Target, Walmart, and Macy’s jumping on the summer sales boon.
In practice, Prime Day appears to be a reward for loyal Amazon Prime subscribers, offering deals exclusive to these subscribers. However, it’s also used as a way to garner even more Prime subscribers. For sellers, it’s a way to run some tests and learn more about the shopping audience ahead of Q4.
Amazon Prime Day 2023: Important Dates & Deadlines*
- April 28, 2023: Deadline to submit deals to be considered for Prime Day.
- June 15, 2023: Deadline for incoming inventory to be included in the Prime Day sale.
Current speculation has Prime Day running either from July 11-12 or July 18-19.
*Note: Prime Day is evolving, so keep coming back for updates and new deadlines to stay on top of this shopping holiday.
Merchants & Brands: How to Prepare for Amazon Prime Day 2023
Many people will tell you that it’s too late to start preparing for Prime Day. However, the official date has not yet been announced, so there is still plenty of time. As well, the supply chain has rebounded some since the worst of the bottlenecks.
In prepping for Amazon Prime Day 2023, start with this checklist to be sure your business is prepared for the influx of sales.
- Inventory: Look at comparable sales holidays from the past (Black Friday, Cyber Monday, Prime Early Access Sale, etc.). See if you can spot trends and calculate a relative number you need in stock to cover all your sales because running out of stock could be the kiss of death. Do you have an FBM backup? Plan for all contingencies and make sure you have cash on hand to cover any pivoting you do.
- Marketing: Connect with your marketing team or agency early. If you’re running a Prime Day deal or external coupon on social media, keep your marketing team in the loop. Ask them for ideas on innovative campaigns that would differentiate you from competitors.
- Listing Optimization: Don’t optimize your listings two days before Prime Day. Do it two weeks or more beforehand so you can get the organic lift of those powerful keywords. Reminder: Do not try to optimize for Prime Day-related keywords! In general, do not try to out-Amazon Amazon.
- Audit Your Ads: There’s nothing worse than wasting money on ads during peak traffic! Clean out keywords that aren’t performing and optimize for your top keywords. Be prepared to spend more money during Prime Day as well. Perhaps even strategize higher ad spend in the hours before, during, and after your Lightning Deal. Need capital? SellersFi can get you up to $5M in as little as 48 hours!
- And download or bookmark Amazon’s official Prime Day ‘23 – Brand Guide.
What to Do if You Don’t Have a Prime Day Deal
While shoppers flock to Amazon for Prime Day deals, there is still plenty of opportunity to capitalize on this influx of traffic to Amazon and across e-commerce channels.
- Social Media and Email Promotions: If you’ve developed a social media community, you can run promotions or offers to these audiences. Drive traffic to Amazon, or you can drive to your own website, TikTok Shop, etc.
- Offer a Coupon: Even if you don’t have a Prime Day Lightning Deal, you can use a coupon to drive people to your listing. You only pay for redemptions, but you get the benefit of a callout with the little green banner on the listing, visible from search results.
- Host a Contest: Create buzz around your product and your brand by hosting a contest with your audience! This could be anything from a bingo card of Prime Day deals to a hashtag goal for user-generated content.
- Try a Bundle or a Gift-with-Purchase: Increase the perceived value of your product by creating a bundle or tossing in a freebie with purchase (even over a certain dollar amount). This could be something as simple as a sticker, postcard, scrunchie, pen, etc. People love bonuses.
- Utilize Ads Beyond Amazon: Try using Google Ads to drive traffic to your Amazon listing. We highly recommend our partners at Ampd to help with this. You can also utilize Facebook ads or other social media platforms as well to expand your reach.
- Work with Influencers: Create an influencer campaign around Prime Day. Offer coupon codes for influencers to share with their audiences or ask that they promote your products during the sale.
- Brand Yourself as a Maverick: This may seem counterintuitive, but you could avoid Prime Day, much like the popular party game Cards Against Humanity did with Black Friday a few years ago. The belief: If you know the value of your product, you don’t need to discount it for people to want to buy it. It’s a bold move, but if you can pull it off, it could be gold for sales and branding.
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