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Amazon Reports Second Quarter 2021 Results

Amazon Reports Second Quarter 2021 Results

Amazon net sales increased 27% to $113.1 billion in the second quarter, year-over-year, and 24% excluding the $2.5 billion favorable impact from year-over-year changes in foreign exchange rates. Net income increased to $7.8 billion in the quarter. (Those numbers are total for the company, which includes its AWS non-retail business.)

Third-party sellers accounted for 56% of worldwide paid units in the second quarter (April, May, June).

Andy Jassy, who took over from Jeff Bezos as CEO earlier this month, was quoted in part saying: “Over the past 18 months, our consumer business has been called on to deliver an unprecedented number of items, including PPE, food, and other products that helped communities around the world cope with the difficult circumstances of the pandemic.”

Juozas Kaziukėnas of Marketplace Pulse said only 50% of Amazon’s revenue comes from being a retailer – Amazon is a services company.

Wall Street analysts had some interesting questions (via SeekingAlpha transcript). One asked if Amazon was considering taking Prime Day from an annual event to “separate events spread out during the same year to capitalize on different seasonal trends.”

Another analyst asked if it planned to open up its fulfillment services to additional platforms, a reference to its recent integration of its Multi-Channel Fulfillment service (MCF) to BigCommerce merchants.

Included in the Highlights section of Thursday’s press release was the following:

Economic Impact and Small Business Empowerment

For the second year in a row, Amazon placed No. 1 on the Progressive Policy Institute’s Investment Heroes list, which ranks U.S. companies’ investments in America. According to the study, Amazon invested more in the U.S. than any other company in 2020; was key to sustaining the economy during the COVID-19 pandemic; and helped drive economic expansion, wage growth, and job creation across the country.

Amazon launched the Black Business Accelerator, committing $150 million over four years to help Black business owners and entrepreneurs succeed as third-party selling partners. The program aims to spur growth and advance equity for Black-owned businesses by providing financial support, education and mentorship, and marketing and promotional support.

In the two-week lead-up to Prime Day, customers spent $1.9 billion on products from third-party sellers during the Spend $10, Get $10 promotion—more than double compared to the 2020 Prime Day small business promotion. Prime Day 2021 was the biggest two-day period ever for small and medium-sized businesses in Amazon’s stores worldwide.

Amazon Advertising launched over 40 new features and self-service capabilities, making it easier for sellers, companies, and authors to grow their businesses by helping customers discover their brands and products. Recent launches include regional sponsored product campaign creation tools; access to educational, technical, and marketing resources via the Partner Network; and a simplified creative asset management solution. In addition, Amazon Advertising expanded the services it offers in Australia, Europe, India, Japan, and Saudi Arabia, creating more opportunities for local and global sellers and brands to grow their businesses in these regions.


Prime members in 20 countries shopped more and saved more this Prime Day than any previous Prime Day, purchasing more than 250 million items. The Fire TV Stick 4K with Alexa Voice Remote was the most popular item purchased. Prime Day also kicked off the Back-to-School shopping season with members worldwide purchasing more than 1 million laptops, 1 million headphones, 600,000 backpacks, 240,000 notebooks, 220,000 Crayola products, and 40,000 calculators.

Prime is now available in 22 countries with the addition of Prime in Portugal, which offers members unlimited, free two-day delivery on millions of products, as well as access to Amazon Prime Video streaming.

Business Prime now serves more than 1 million business customers of all sizes worldwide, including Chevron, Citi, and the State of Utah. Since launching in 2017, Business Prime has saved members millions of dollars by shipping over 140 million packages free of charge.

For the first time, Amazon brought Just Walk Out technology to a full-sized grocery store, offering customers in Bellevue, Washington the option to skip the checkout line or use traditional checkout. Amazon Fresh now has 15 stores in the U.S. and five in the UK.

Amazon Fashion expanded its head-to-toe outfit recommendations, which use machine learning models to inspire customers and help them find products that fit their unique style and complete their look. “Styling Ideas” are now available on Fashion product pages in France, Germany, India, Italy, Spain, and the U.S.

Amazon Pharmacy introduced a six-month supply option for eligible medications, offering customers a new convenient way to purchase many of the most commonly prescribed medications. For Prime members, pharmacy purchases always include free, unlimited two-day delivery, and select medications start at just $1 per month when customers pay without insurance.

Amazon launched the “Internet Famous” storefront, a curated selection of the top trending products on social media. The storefront showcases immersive content that allows customers to discover brands across multiple categories while engaging with their favorite influencers.

Amazon launched its first Brand Protection Report, which detailed Amazon’s anti-counterfeiting efforts and progress in driving counterfeit to zero in its store. In 2020, Amazon invested over $700 million and employed more than 10,000 people to protect customers and sellers in its store and to stop bad actors before they list products for sale. Amazon’s verification processes prevented over 6 million attempts to create selling accounts before bad actors listed a single product for sale and seized over 2 million counterfeit products sent to its fulfillment centers before they were sent to a customer.

See the full press release on the AboutAmazon.com website.

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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). She is a member of the Online News Association (Sep 2005 - present) and Investigative Reporters and Editors (Mar 2006 - present). Follow her on Twitter at @ecommercebytes and send news tips to ina@ecommercebytes.com. See disclosure at EcommerceBytes.com/disclosure/.