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Amazon Prime Day 2020 Is On, but Not Without Risks

Amazon
Amazon Prime Day 2020 Is On, but Not Without Risks

Amazon invited sellers to submit deals for Prime Day 2020, a big sale held each July since it launched in 2015. There was uncertainty about this year’s event due to the coronavirus pandemic, but on Tuesday, Amazon posted an invitation to UK sellers to submit deals via Seller Central Europe.

Many experts expected Amazon to push back Prime Day 2020 to August if it was going to hold the event at all this year.

Amazon’s announcement doesn’t specify the date of this year’s event, but it urges sellers to apply quickly to have their products featured in Lightning Deals, Spotlight Deals, and Prime Targeted Vouchers. “It is important to act fast and submit your Deals now, for a chance to have your deal considered for this event,” the company wrote in the May 19th announcement.

Android Central speculated the Prime Day shopping event could be longer than last year’s 48-hour sale and speculated it could kick off on August 10th.

There’s plenty of risk involved for Amazon in proceeding with Prime Day given workers’ health concerns, continued strains on logistics and shipping, and consumer sentiment as the pandemic drags on.

The risk extends to third-party sellers considering participating in Prime Day. The Washington Post published a story this morning citing research from Marketplace Pulse indicating a record number of complaints filed against merchants over shipping-related issues.

One reason the report cited: many third-party merchants who had relied on Amazon’s FBA fulfillment service took on shipping themselves after Amazon prioritized the sales and fulfillment of essential items for a period of time. (The Post said an Amazon spokesperson told it the company eased its FBA warehouse restrictions on April 20th and removed quantity limits altogether last week.)

Amazon itself benefits greatly from Prime Day – not only does it heavily promote its own products and devices during the event, it sees a bump in Prime subscribership, since you must be a member in order to take advantage of Prime Day deals.

Amazon’s website continues to state, “Prime Day 2020 has not been announced.” Stay tuned!

Update 5/21/2020: The Wall Street Journal reported this morning that Amazon will likely hold Prime Day in the fall this year.

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Ina Steiner
Ina Steiner
Ina Steiner is co-founder and Editor of EcommerceBytes and has been reporting on ecommerce since 1999. She's a widely cited authority on marketplace selling and is author of "Turn eBay Data Into Dollars" (McGraw-Hill 2006). Her blog was featured in the book, "Blogging Heroes" (Wiley 2008). Follow her on Twitter at @ecommercebytes and send news tips to ina@ecommercebytes.com.

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