Resources » Blog » Amazon Prime Day Pros & Cons: Should Sellers Participate?

Amazon Prime Day for Sellers
Important News

Amazon Prime Day Pros & Cons: Should Sellers Participate?

Update, June 21, 2023: 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)!

Amazon Prime Day can be a boon for sellers, but strict deadlines and seller rules can make participating feel overwhelming. Third-party sellers who offer Prime Day deals need to stay on top of their game to avoid missing out.

If you choose to take advantage of Prime Day, the time to start preparing is . . . well, yesterday. But with so much to do to get your business ready, it can be hard to know where to start.

Let’s run through the benefits and drawbacks so you can decide how to position your store for Prime Day 2023.

Amazon Prime Day for Sellers

  • The Pros and Cons of Selling on Prime Day
  • FAQs About Amazon Prime Day
  • Is Amazon Prime Day Profitable for Sellers?
  • How to Prep for a Profitable Prime Day

Is It Prime Time for Your Business? The Pros and Cons of Selling on Prime Day

The Pros

If you’re still on the fence about whether or not to participate in Prime Day, here are some potential benefits to consider.

  • Clearing Unsold Inventory: If you have lots of extra products to move, offering the right deal and promoting it well could clear dead stock out of your warehouse — earning you a profit, saving on storage costs, and avoiding further liquidation headaches.
  • More (and Better) Product Reviews: The more you sell on Prime Day, the more product reviews you’ll rack up — especially if you request reviews from your customers. Positive reviews can have an exponential effect on your e-commerce growth and research shows that customers are more likely to rank and review your product highly if they get it on sale.

The Cons

There’s no downside to being on Amazon during Prime Day, but there are some real costs that come with investing in a Prime Day sales boost.

  • High Fees and Low Margins: With selling plans, referral fees, fulfillment fees, and aged inventory surcharges, selling on Amazon can quickly get expensive. Lowering prices, increasing your inventory, spending on promotions, and paying Prime Day fees can make your budget even tighter.
  • Overstocking and Underselling: If your product doesn’t perform well on Prime Day, you could be stuck with extra stock — especially if you overestimate and order too much inventory. Besides the cost of the product, you could end up paying more for storage or liquidation.
  • Competition: Prime Day hype means increased competition from other sellers on Amazon. You’re not just competing with other marketplace sellers, you’re also competing with other large retailers and going head-to-head with Amazon itself.

FAQS About Amazon Prime Day

What’s the History of Amazon Prime Day?

Amazon Prime Day is a 48-hour sale event exclusively for Amazon Prime Members. During the event, Amazon Prime members get access to hundreds of limited-time deals, some of which only last a few hours.

The first Amazon Prime Day was held on July 15, 2015, to celebrate the 20th anniversary of’s official opening as an online bookstore. The 24-hour event was accessible to Amazon Prime members in the US, UK, Spain, Japan, Italy, Germany, France, Canada, and Austria.

At the time, it was the biggest sales day in the company’s history, beating even its 2014 Black Friday numbers. Though some were quite vocal about sold-out products and other frustrations, customers still ordered a total of over 34.4 million items.

The first two-day Prime Day event was held in July 2019. In 2020, the pandemic forced Amazon to delay the event until October.

In 2022, Amazon held its regular Prime Day in July, and a second event in October dubbed the Prime Early Access sale. It’s not clear yet whether Amazon plans to run two events again in future years, but given the trend toward earlier holiday shopping, another October event could be in the works.

Do Things Sell Out Fast on Prime Day?

With increased traffic and the promise of incredible deals, products tend to move fast on Prime Day. Offering a deal, promotion, or coupon, or running sponsored ads can boost your sales even more.

The biggest sellers on Prime Day are typically Amazon smart home products, like Fire TV Sticks, Blink cameras, and Echo devices. Just below them on the list in 2022 were other consumer electronic devices and non-perishable or shelf-stable CPGs. The Household Essentials category saw the most sales growth between 2021 and 2022.

Certain deals on Prime Day are designed to sell out especially fast — sometimes in as little as a few minutes. Lightning Deals, for example, are only offered for a limited number of hours or until stock runs out.

Lightning Deals are promoted on the Prime Day page, upping your odds of getting your storefront noticed by new customers. The fee to offer a Lightning Deal on a regular day is around $150, but on Prime Days, it can be as high as $300-500.

If a Lightning Deal isn’t available or isn’t the right option for your business, you can also boost Prime Day sales by offering a Prime Exclusive Discount. These discounts don’t require a fee, but you need to be in good standing with Amazon. Both Lightning Deals and Prime Exclusive Discounts come with a long list of rules and restrictions.

Who Benefits from Prime Day?

Though growth has slowed somewhat in recent years, Prime Day has historically been a huge revenue booster for Amazon. According to TechCrunch, Prime Day generated around $12 billion globally in 2022. Prime Day may also benefit Amazon by helping offload excess inventory and enlist new Prime subscribers.

Other retailers selling on their sites can also benefit from what’s called the Prime Day “halo effect.” Target and Best Buy, for instance, have seen a sales boost from running promotional events around the same time. Walmart has even managed to up its sales on Prime Day without making any special effort to attract customers.

Prime Members can benefit from lower prices on coveted items and household necessities, but many Amazon customers continue to complain of disappointing deals. If you can offer a discount that feels truly worthwhile for the customer, your store may be poised to stand out from the pack.

With the right preparation, growing e-commerce businesses have much to gain from Prime Day. Digital Commerce 360 estimates that third-party sales made up just over 37% of all Amazon Prime Day sales in 2022. Amazon has also made a point of incentivizing Prime Day shoppers to spend more on marketplace sellers, offering credits and prizes for buying from eligible third-party sellers.

Are Things Cheaper on Prime Day?

Prime Day can bring increased savings for shoppers depending on which items they’re looking for. Amazon devices sell for deeply discounted prices, accounting for their high share of the sales volume.

Other Prime Day discounts can be hit or miss, and savvy customers may be able to find lower prices on Black Friday, Labor Day, and other big sale periods. Competing July sales from other large retailers like Best Buy and Target may also offer lower prices than Amazon on certain items. Amazon’s price history is pretty transparent, so it’s easy enough for comparison shoppers to make sure they’re getting a good deal.

While the vast majority of Prime Day marketplace deals are legitimate, there’s always the potential for bad actors to take advantage. Referencing a recent paper by researchers at three different universities, EcomCrew pointed out that some unsavory sellers may be using new practices to make shoppers think they’re saving, when prices have increased. Sites like Gizmodo and Lifehacker advise shoppers to use price-tracking software to double-check deals before buying.

Is Amazon Prime Day Profitable for Sellers?

Because of the massive uptick in web traffic — in 2022, shoppers bought over 100,000 items per minute of the sale — many sellers can expect to see increased sales on Prime Day. Offering a deal or discount can put your product front and center and help you earn even more.

On the other hand, selling on Amazon is getting more expensive, with inflation costs passed on to third-party sellers in the form of fee hikes, new fees, and increased ad prices. If your profit margins are already tight, the costs associated with active participation in Prime Day — like increasing your ad spend, beefing up your inventory, and paying to offer Prime Day deals — could mean the higher sales volume isn’t worth the expense.

Amazon Seller Central offers a calculator to help you determine the potential profitability of your business, but you might be better off relying on more sophisticated analytics tools to make an informed decision.

How to Prep for a Profitable Prime Day

With the right data and approach, participating in Amazon Prime Day can be a great move for your business. 

Steps to Take to Increase Your Odds of Prime Day Success:

  • Act early to take advantage of Lightning Deals and Prime Exclusive Discounts. The deadlines for each in 2023 were April 28th and May 5th, respectively. But even if you missed the window for special Prime Day promotions, your product can still sell well, especially if it’s priced competitively and performs well in search results. Either way, start planning now for the next big sale.
  • Make sure you have enough products in stock and ready for Amazon fulfillment. If you’re already geared up to offer deals on Prime Day, make sure you’re stocked up. Amazon says sellers participating in Prime Day 2023 need to have their FBA inventory at Amazon’s warehouses by June 15th.
  • Take advantage of other Amazon features to promote your product on Prime Day. Even if you don’t have a Lightning Deal or Prime Exclusive Discount, you can still create use promos. Offer coupons, run PPC ads, or consider promoting your products through Amazon Live
  • Plan and execute a stellar social media and marketing campaign. Peg your social media and email marketing strategies to Prime Day as if it were a holiday, and take advantage of Prime Day hashtags to build up your social community. Use social and email to reconnect with loyal customers and encourage them to review your product or share your Prime Day deals.

The key to winning any Amazon sale is effective preparation, so start early to secure the best results.

Maximize Your Prime Day Potential with SellersFi

If you’re already selling on Amazon, participating in Prime Day isn’t exactly up for debate. You’ll still be there on the big day when that influx of extra traffic hits. 

The real question is whether you’re ready to dive in even further. Then ask whether you’ve got the tools you need to drive all that exposure straight to your product pages.

It takes a lot to pull off a successful Prime Day campaign. You need to address increased inventory, fees, ad and social spend, and more. SellersFi has the financial solutions to cover all your bases. We built our Revenue Advance solution to help sellers like you maximize your Amazon earning potential.

Explore our growing library of Amazon insights and resources or register to learn more about our e-commerce funding options. There’s no obligation, just opportunities!


Ready to grow your business?

Contact a SellersFi expert to see your growth options and get started!

By clicking on the button above, you agree to receive SellersFi marketing communications.

Ready to grow your business?

Contact a SellersFi expert to see your growth options and get started!

By clicking on the button above, you agree to receive SellersFi marketing communications.

Related Articles