Move over, summer solstice. Prime Day is officially the longest day of the year, with Amazon’s annual shopping holiday scheduled to last a record 48 hours in 2019. With retailers competing by offering their own deals on the platform across apparel, tech, beauty, home, and beyond, Prime Day is set to be the Cyber Week of the summer.
To understand this year’s Prime Day shopping marathon, consider how it’s evolved since it first appeared in 2015.
Evolution of Amazon Prime Day
|2015||July 15||24 Hours|
|2016||July 12||24 Hours|
|2017||July 10-11||30 Hours|
|2018||July 16-17||36 Hours|
|2019||July 15-16||48 Hours|
More time on the table means more consumers primed for shopping – and more retailers aiming to cash in. Want data-driven insights on what to expect this year? Read on for our top Prime Day predictions, informed by our unique data set of 500 million shoppers and 1.4 billion visits.
The Prime Day effect will cool slightly
Last year, we saw a rising Prime Day tide lift all ships, with 60% year-over-year revenue growth across non-Amazon ecommerce sites. As Prime Day loses a bit of its newness factor and goes on longer than ever before, we predict slightly less revenue growth compared to previous years.
We anticipate that this year's Prime Day will see year-over-year ecommerce revenue growth across retail of 51%, compared to last year's 60%. This number is still significant – for example, Q1 2019 saw just 12% revenue growth compared to Q4 2018. Other retailers are likely to build on the demand that Amazon will generate during this timeframe. Thus, while year-over-year growth will likely slow slightly, Prime Day will still drum up strong shopper interest in the dog days of summer leading up to back-to-school sales.
These five U.S. cities will spend the most on Prime Day
The most popular urban shopping destination in 2019 isn’t Rodeo Drive or the Magnificent Mile – it’s the consumer’s doorstep. But which cities will rack up the biggest bills? This year, we’re studying location data to see which cities boast the highest revenue per shopper.
While New York, Chicago, Dallas, San Jose, and Philadelphia are typically the top shopping cities for ecommerce across the U.S., we expect cities in Texas to make a big showing for Prime Day. We predict that this year’s top five cities will be New York, Dallas, Chicago, San Jose, and Houston, thanks to the Lone Star state’s characteristically big Prime Day spending in 2018 and triple-digit temperatures making online shopping especially appealing.
Mobile shopping hits a new Prime Day milestone
In Q1 2019, we saw the mobile tipping point for order share officially arrive: Mobile is now responsible for more ecommerce orders than desktop computers. In 2019, we expect to see the most mobile-first Prime Day ever, with 49% of orders and 66% of visits coming from mobile phones. Contrast that with 44% and 61% last year. This mobile-first march mirrors the 2018 holiday shopping season when mobile shopping eclipsed desktop for the first time.
Luxury and home will benefit most from the Prime Day effect
Our team of retail analysts segment Shopping Index data into these subverticals: active apparel, general apparel, luxury apparel, footwear, health and beauty, and home. Similar to last year, we expect to see luxury and home to be the two subverticals with the most year-over-year revenue growth on Prime Day.
Shoppers have been slower to buy luxury and home goods products online, compared to items like apparel and footwear. It makes sense: In the early 2010s, buying a designer handbag or sofa for thousands of dollars online wasn’t a common (or comfortable) practice. But today, the luxury and home industries lead ecommerce growth, as online shopping – including the ubiquitous Amazon – has readied consumers to press the digital buy button on items in every category and price point.
More proof: During holiday 2018, home saw 49% year-over-year revenue growth on Cyber Week, compared to 16% for verticals overall.
Retailers continue to play discount chicken but won’t be more generous with discounts
Retailers will offer plenty of their own promotions to compete with Prime Day, but their discounts won’t be deeper than in previous years – and free shipping will be only slightly more plentiful. For Prime Day 2019, we predict a free shipping rate of 74% and a discount rate of 21%.
That means we expect 74% of all Prime Day orders to be shipped at no cost to the shopper – and order values to be discounted by 21%. Last year, those numbers were 73% and 23%, respectively. Retailers will offer deals, make no mistake – but they won’t beat the epic 31% off seen on Cyber Monday 2018.
Which retailers and brands will earn the most social media mentions, thanks to their Prime Day deals? How will retailers use email marketing to drive shoppers to their discounts? Stay tuned for a Prime Day recap next week of the ecommerce trends, data points, and stories shaping the summer’s biggest week of shopping.
And to keep up on the trends that inform customer behavior, download our research report on the State of the Connected Customer.