Amazon Prime Day 2017: The inside story on consumer sentiment

by | Aug 23, 2017 | Public Relations

If any one event displays the full power and influence of Amazon, it is the etail giant’s Prime Day, which showcased staggering success this year. When asked if they shopped for Amazon Prime Day deals on July 11, 36 percent of respondents to a new survey confirmed they had made a purchase—a substantial increase on the 22 percent who said they had actively shopped for Prime Day deals in 2016, according to sales and marketing optimization firm Periscope By McKinsey.

“While flash sales have become a fixture of online retail, enticing shoppers to part with their money using a combination of limited time, limited quantities and great deals is no longer enough to drive customers to buy on the day,” said Brian Elliott, managing partner of Periscope By McKinsey, in a news release. “As these findings demonstrate, there’s more to a successful flash sale than discounting some items or starting a countdown clock. To maximize the impact of time-limited online shopping events, retailers and brands need to use even more data analytics solutions to deliver an optimized shopping experience.”

The firm recently announced the findings of research it carried out following this year’s Amazon Prime Day—the third and largest sales event yet in company’s history. Periscope conducted online research with U.S. shoppers to explore their attitudes, actions and behaviors in relation to Amazon Prime Day 2017.

Interestingly, just over a third (34 percent) of respondents were not aware of Prime Day last year and had taken the decision to explore the event for the very first time this year. Examining what had motivated them to shop on Amazon Prime Day this year, 12 percent confirmed having received more personalized marketing messages from Amazon which incentivized them to shop more. Furthermore, over one-quarter (26 percent) said this year they had encountered offers in more of the categories they were interested in shopping in.

Amazon Prime Day 2017: The inside story on consumer sentiment

Asked how their shopping behaviors had changed compared to last year’s Prime Day, 12 percent of respondents confirmed they had shopped across more categories in this year’s event, with a further 7 percent admitting to spending more money.

Getting the right deal is personal for consumers

When asked to evaluate what most influenced their decision to shop on Amazon Prime Day, more than half (54 percent) of respondents said their priority was to check out discounts on items they already planned to buy. A further 28 percent were less discriminating, preferring to hunt down and evaluate the best promotions and discounts available across multiple product categories.

Amazon Prime Day 2017: The inside story on consumer sentiment

Consumer attitudes appear conflicted

Interestingly, however, a significant number of shoppers expressed skepticism about the benefits to them of buying something on Prime Day. Almost one-third (31 percent) of respondents stated that promotions are never on products they are interested in and, as a result, they did not engage with the event. A further 19 percent went on to say they viewed Prime Day as a “marketing trick” and that, in their opinion, pre-event price inflation was being employed to make deals on the day seem more appealing to shoppers.

Amazon Prime Day 2017: The inside story on consumer sentiment

This last finding chimes with previous Periscope research into consumer attitudes to Black Friday 2016, when 28 percent of U.S. respondents expressed similar cynicism in relation to the ‘reality’ of the deals on offer—accusing retailers and brands of undertaking price manipulations to motivate shoppers.

Asked if they shop for discounts on Black Friday, 44 percent of respondents said this event had no appeal for them—a finding which indicates that, as Prime Members, Prime Day was the motivating factor that attracted these consumers to open their wallets.

Download the report here.

Richard Carufel
Richard Carufel is editor of Bulldog Reporter and the Daily ’Dog, one of the web’s leading sources of PR and marketing communications news and opinions. He has been reporting on the PR and communications industry for over 17 years, and has interviewed hundreds of journalists and PR industry leaders. Reach him at richard.carufel@bulldogreporter.com; @BulldogReporter