Trends We Saw From Amazon Prime Day 2021

Rudy Thompson

June 29, 2021

Prime Day 2021 was back to its regular summer schedule this year, but in spite of a slight return to normal, the event was anything but–at least if recent history has anything to say about it.

While Prime Day continues to grow year over year and remains a large and highly anticipated event for Amazon, the market has seen its share of tumult and uncertainty over the past year. That tumult and uncertainty was reflected in this year’s June 21st and 22nd event.

How successful was Prime Day 2021? What were the biggest wins and notable losses? Let’s take a look at the trends.

Prime Day’s growth stalled in 2021

While Prime Day typically pulls big numbers—it’s seen a consistent growth rate of 50% or more year over year—this year’s event was just okay. In fact, Prime Day 2021’s growth actually decelerated substantially.

Prime Day 2021 grew a mere 5-10% over last year’s event, with Amazon reportedly hitting $11.9 billion in sales. That number is a relatively small step up from the $10.39 billion Amazon made on Prime Day 2020, which was pushed to October 13th and 14th due to challenges associated with Covid-19.

Last year’s sales numbers give a good idea of just how muted this year’s growth was: Prime Day 2020 saw a more than 45% sales gain from $7.16 billion in 2019. That equates to about a 35% drop in 2021.

Overall, reports indicate a very moderate year for the event, though Amazon reports that Prime members purchased over 250 million items during this year’s event and some categories saw noticeable lift.

Manufacturing remained an issue

One of the biggest challenges Amazon faced as a company last year was meeting consumer demand and supplying enough inventory throughout the initial stages of the Covid-19 pandemic. Global manufacturers have continued to struggle to meet demand in 2021, and not only has that impacted the market as a whole, but it’s a primary reason why Prime Day was less successful than in previous years.

Many brands have struggled to retain enough inventory to put in the hands of customers due to global manufacturing constraints. Currently, it’s very difficult to get inventory out of international ports, which has also contributed to fewer sales. And while some brands got lucky during Prime Day, lack of inventory led to lackluster sales offerings overall.

Timing impacted sales

In spite of last year being a wild and, yes, unprecedented year for manufacturing and ecommerce, Prime Day 2020 was uniquely positioned to capture sales because of its proximity to Black Friday and Cyber Monday. In a twist of events, these sales holidays saw lighter traffic than expected because brands pushed their promotion periods up to compete for holiday shoppers during Prime Week in October. Returning the sales period to the summertime naturally meant distancing it from that holiday traffic, which may have also contributed to lower sales growth.

Best-selling categories

Even though Prime Day 2021 was mild overall, there were isolated categories that did really well. Baby products and home products had a successful Prime Day, largely because brands had plenty of inventory, as did nutrition, tools, Amazon devices, apparel and housewares, and electronics.

Categories that struggled

In spite of having a decent Prime Day, the tech category in particular had challenges that contributed to lower sales across the entire event.

Tech products have been some of the hardest to get ahold of in 2021 due to manufacturing delays. As a result, many third-party sellers used this year’s Prime Day to discount and clear out older generation product they had available in their warehouses. Older tech products are of little interest to Prime Day shoppers, who have come to expect screaming deals on the latest and greatest during the event. Lacking that opportunity, the event was less successful than it may have been otherwise.

Amazon is prioritizing marketplace sellers

In spite of having a lower than normal growth, Prime Day 2021 marks the second Prime Day event in a row when marketplace sales grew faster than sales of Amazon’s own products. The company has been pushing more small and medium-sized businesses to the front of its Prime Day event, and the proof of its success is in the numbers.

Marketplace sales grew 12% in 2021, while sales of Amazon’s products, including its private label goods, grew only 5.3%. Marketplace Prime Day sales had been on the decline before 2020, as Amazon has historically heavily promoted its own products during the event, but the share of marketplace sales has been growing.

The future of Amazon Prime

The past two Prime Day events have not quite been par for the course for Amazon, and there is still uncertainty about what global manufacturing will look like in 2022, if it will have improved significantly by then, for example, or if it will remain just as constrained as it has been in 2020 and 2021.

The lead up to the holidays will be a good indicator of what next year’s Prime Day may look like, and while this year’s event wasn’t overwhelmingly successful, there is hope that Prime Day will return to more normalcy next year and that there may be more competition on the horizon.

Other brands are looking to compete with Amazon

We’ve known this for awhile, but Prime Day isn’t going anywhere anytime soon. The event has become a massive promotion for Amazon and it’s garnered enough attention to become an established sales holiday akin to Black Friday or Cyber Monday. No longer can brands ignore Prime Day, and no longer are they.

Ecommerce brands like Walmart and Target have already adapted to capture the attention of shoppers during Prime Day, running their own promotions and adding excitement to their online shopping experience to stay competitive. Wise third party sellers are also taking advantage of Prime Day traffic to either drive conversion on their listings or run retargeted ad campaigns to capture sales in the coming months leading up to the holidays. What we may see in the years to come are big brands offering “Prime Day” like promotions at a scale to really give Amazon a run for their money.

The reality is the entire ecommerce ecosystem is a hot place to be during Prime Week, and just like most brands offer sales and excitement during Black Friday to attract customers, most brands are having to do the same during Prime Day to stay competitive and keep up. As the event continues to grow (and hopefully return to normal), the opportunities for brands to expand in this space will grow as well.

Looking to get your brand on Amazon and not sure where to start? Pattern is your answer. We’ll help you create stellar marketplace listings and effective ad campaigns, and we’ll also prepare you with everything you need for the next Prime Day so you’re ready to go (and grow) on Amazon. To learn more, contact us today!

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Amazon's Sponsored Product ads
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What Are Amazon’s Advertising Products? Sponsored Product, Brand, & Display Ads

What Are Amazon’s Advertising Products? Sponsored Product, Brand, & Display Ads

Utilizing Amazon sponsored ads can be a smart way for a brand to drive greater traffic to a product listing and start increasing sales. While many brands still struggle to manage their advertising strategies, 30% of Amazon brand sellers increased their advertising budgets in 2022. As ecommerce executives (or even on the nose with VPs of ecommerce?)  approve their 2023 advertising budgets, it may be worth it to take a look at Amazon’s advertising products and the benefit they may have on increasing conversions. 

​​Pattern is the premier ecommerce accelerator with all of the expertise, data-driven insights, and technology brands need to gain control on Amazon and maintain their competitive niche. We know the high value of and how to utilize Amazon’s advertising products to drive the most traffic and conversions to benefit and accelerate your brand.

Here are Amazon’s three main advertising products you should know about in order to drive listing traffic to your products and increase conversions: 

For a brand executive who is selling their product on Amazon, you may not already know the differences between campaign type, so we will walk you through the differences and uses for each of these three ad campaigns.

Sponsored Product Ads

Sponsored Products are a mid-funnel advertising strategy that gives visibility to products above the top organic listings (see example below). This strategy uses custom keywords to get products in front of the consumers who are searching for them, however it can be used to capture new audiences as well.These cost-per-click (CPC) ads require no additional copy or images, but usually receive the most interaction of the campaigns and need to be monitored closely.

As you can see, these ads look just like an organic listing, however they say, “Sponsored,” on them. These types of ads can be especially effective forms of advertising because they tend to blend in with the organic results around them. With Sponsored Products, you can get your products in front of qualified customers who are searching for your product in such a way that doesn’t make them feel like they are being served an advertisement.

Sponsored Brand Ads

Sponsored Brand Ads are a top-of-funnel brand awareness tool and function on keywords. This ad format helps show a customer what they may be in need of and where to get it.  Commonly used to promote product lines or best sellers, a Sponsored Brand ad shows up as a banner above the search results (see example below). This type of ad requires that the brand showcase at least three separate products.

Unlike other campaigns used on the Amazon platform, Sponsored Brand ads require ad copy and a unique logo. These ads also can take customers to a custom landing page, or a page on the brand store, that way they get a clear and overall picture about who your brand is, what other products you sell, and why they can trust your brand

Sponsored Display Ads

Sponsored Display ads can be a tactic for top, middle, or bottom of the advertising funnel due to its varying targeting abilities. Although most commonly found under the bullet points of a detail page, these ads can also show in emails, newsletters, and even more locations off platform.

Unlike the previous ad campaigns discussed, sponsored display ads can target shopping behaviors, like repeat purchasers, similar product purchasers, and even people who viewed the detail page but did not buy. Sponsored Display ads help customers discover your brand, drive awareness, and create loyalty. 

The example above shows just one of the many placements Sponsored Display has.

Accelerate Your Sponsored Products With Pattern 

Rather than competing with each other, each of the three sponsored ad products focus on a different section of the sales funnel, allowing you to target your customers and hit your sales numbers, all while edging out possible competitors. When brands use these advertising campaigns, they can better optimize their ad budget to improve ROAS and build revenue. 

At Pattern, we have all the resources to help your brand build successful advertising and digital marketing campaigns on Amazon so you can increase traffic and conversions, which will in turn increase your revenue

Global Ecommerce Weekly News: 27th September 2022
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Global Ecommerce Weekly News: 27th September 2022

Get up to date with this week's ecommerce headlines from around the globe. --- Amazon News --- Amazon drives renewable energy push with 71 new projects Amazon is planning to add 2.7 gigawatts of clean energy capacity through a couple of new projects as the company attempts to use 100% renewable energy by 2025. The ecommerce business will soon have a total of 329 renewable energy projects, generating 50,000 gigawatt hours of clean energy, which is equivalent to powering 4.6 million US homes every year. [Read more on Reuters](https://www.reuters.com/business/sustainable-business/amazon-drives-renewable-energy-push-with-71-new-projects-2022-09-21/) Amazon launches Prime Early Access Sale Amazon is launching a new 2-day shopping event for its Prime members only, beginning on the 11th of October. Across 15 countries, Prime customers will have access to the shopping event, with thousands of deals on offer globall, ranging from fashion to electronics to essentials. The event has the purpose of giving Prime users the chance to spread the cost of items over the winter months, 6 weeks ahead of Black Friday. [Read more on Charged Retail](https://www.chargedretail.co.uk/2022/09/26/prime-early-access-sale/) --- Other Marketplace News --- Shopify unveils new localisation tool Shopify is launching a new localisation tool, called Translate & Adapt, which works with Shopify Markets to offer localisation for sellers who are looking to expand into new markets. The tool translates a user’s online store into different languages, including product pages and information pages. Merchants are also able to create different shipping terms for each market using the new tool, which allows international expansion and offers a more localised consumer experience, unveiling new potential. [Read more on Ecommerce News](https://ecommercenews.eu/shopify-launches-new-localisation-tool/) Etsy is set to invest hundreds of millions into its marketing platform Etsy CEO claims that the company is on route to spend more than $570 million USD on marketing this year. Even during a time of macroeconomic pressure, inflation and rising interest rates, the company is preparing itself and its sellers for the upcoming holiday season and is focused on retaining interest from buyers. [Read more on Yahoo News](https://uk.news.yahoo.com/etsy-600-million-on-marketing-ceo-154054219.html) --- Other Ecommerce News --- Meta looks to cut costs by 10% in the coming months Meta employees are facing job redundancies as the company plans to cut its costs by 10% over the next few months. Meta reported a 22% YoY increase in costs and expenses, totalling over $20 billion USD. The cuts are expected to come in the form of job redundancies as a result of department reorganisations rather than formal layoffs. [Read more on Charged Retail](https://www.chargedretail.co.uk/2022/09/22/meta-to-slash-costs-by-10-over-coming-months/) DHL teams up with Quadient to offer smart locker deliveries in the UK DHL and tech company, Quadient, have partnered to offer smart lockers parcel pick-up throughout the UK. The new contactless, secure locker stations will give recipients more choice and flexibility to receive their parcels at a time and location best suited to them. The partnership plans to install 500 locker stations across the country by the end of 2022. [Read more on Charged Retail](https://www.chargedretail.co.uk/2022/09/21/dhl-partners-with-quadient-to-offer-smart-locker-delivery/) The online fashion market is set to be worth nearly $170 billion USD in 2025 The European online fashion retail market is set to grow 50% by 2025, with an online turnover of $170 billion USD, which is 33% of the retail branch’s total. Cross-border marketplaces prove to be the largest drivers of this growth, with online websites and apps like Vinted largely pushing the market’s online growth. Zalando recently became the largest cross-border fashion retailer/marketplace, responsible for 11.7% of the online market’s share. [Read more on Ecommerce News](https://ecommercenews.eu/online-fashion-market-worth-e175-billion-in-2025/)

How an Amazon SEO Agency Should Be Serving Your Brand
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How an Amazon SEO Agency Should Be Serving Your Brand

If you’re in the global ecommerce space, you are most likely aware of Amazon, and probably selling your products on the marketplace. With over $470 billion in sales in 2021 alone, Amazon stands as the third largest company in the world based on revenue. The ecommerce giant is a household name in the U.S. and working hard to grow its market share across five continents worldwide.

Having your products available on Amazon and being competitive there, though, are definitely two different things. If you want to really succeed on Amazon, you’ll need specialized insight into how Amazon works and how to make it work for you. So, for many brands, it’s a great idea to work with an Amazon Search Engine Optimization (SEO) agency.

At Pattern, Amazon SEO optimization service is one of our key competencies. We understand that technology, data-driven insights and expertise  are the most important tools brands can leverage to win top listing spots on digital marketplaces. With expert teams and years of experience, we help brands conquer the Profitability Death Spiral as they compete with other products and sellers online. We offer Amazon SEO agency services as a core solution to brands that need more resources to get ahead. 

What is an Amazon SEO Agency?

An Amazon SEO agency serves brands by improving their products’ rank and listing performance on Amazon. They make strategic decisions about ad spending and placement that lead to higher traffic, conversions, and revenue for ecommerce brands.

A great Amazon SEO Agency partner will:

Prioritize Your Success

Unfortunately, many Amazon SEO agencies profit in unfair ways from your brands’ perceived success based on the ROAS numbers they provide. This is done through including branded search terms in ROAS reports, which naturally skew listing performance

Let’s say, for instance, your brand is called “Annie’s” and you sell lollipops. Your brand has a very high likelihood of winning the top listing spots on Amazon for lollipop search terms that are paired with “Annie’s,” your brand name. So, SEO agencies will spend your ad money on those terms and report a very high ROAS. 

To avoid scenarios like these, it’s best to look for an agency that either calculates their profits on metrics other than your ROAS scores or weighs branded search terms differently in the performance metrics reports. Regardless of your Amazon SEO agency’s cost structure, you should align onbranded search terms before committing to a scope of work.

Provide Detailed Competitive Insight

A great indicator of a high-quality Amazon SEO agency is the level of insight they can provide into your competitors’ listing positioning and how it compares to yours. Data fanaticism is so important at Pattern that we’ve developed proprietary technology to display this exact information with precise detail for every brand we work with. In fact, you can find our free version here to see how you compare to some of your top competitors based on ASIN.

It’s certainly possible to improve your Amazon search performance with blind spending strategies. But a truly great solution will help you to know where your dollars are at their most powerful and competitive.

Reduce Your Ad Spend Over Time

Amazon’s A10 algorithm prioritizes customer satisfaction—it wants to show consumers the best products that align with their search intent to improve conversions and sales. So, the best way to gain momentum on Amazon is to work on incremental wins. 

Improving your performance on more obscure search terms that align with your customers’ search intent is a great way to increase ROAS for the long term. A10 will reward your success with better rankings on higher-volume search terms and the virtuous cycle can help you conquer your most-coveted listing spots. And the best part? This process of gaining momentum, if done right, will naturally decrease your ad spend over time as Amazon recognizes your value and works with you to keep your products at the top of consumers’ search results.

Amazon SEO Optimization and More

As an Amazon SEO specialist, Pattern knows how to help your brand win better success for long-term profitability on Amazon. With our data-driven tools and brilliant teams of ecommerce experts, we help brands with listing management, content optimization, Amazon ad strategies, and more.

Contact us to learn more about our SEO optimization services.