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Prime Day 2018 | Have Amazon, and its rivals, given shoppers the best deals yet?

By Irene Bodega

After surpassing the Black Friday 2016 sales record last year, Amazon Prime Day is back with an additional six hours worth of deals compared to 2017.

Amazon announced that the 36 hours sales event, as of 12pm today (16 July) and ending at midnight tomorrow (17 July), would be the largest Prime Day ever, with more than a million products being discounted worldwide.

Last year, Brand View analysis revealed that on Prime Day 2017 there were twice as many promotions than in 2016, with the Amazon Echo and Fire devices available at their lowest ever price. Since Amazon announced that Prime Day 2018 would bring even more and greater deals on its own devices, we looked at the value of the headline deals currently available online.

 

Headline Deals Prime Day 2018

Amazon listed 18 Prime Day deals on its own devices, including deals on Ring Video Doorbells, the company it acquired in February 2018.

Amazon website 16 July 2018 (12pm)

 

Amazon largely made good on its promise to have “the biggest deals yet on Alexa-enabled products”. The Echo Dot was available for £29.99, £5 lower than Black Friday and Prime Day last year.

The Amazon Echo was also at its lowest ever price at £59.99, £10 cheaper than Black Friday 2017. The Echo Spot and Echo Show were new to this year’s Prime Day deals and were available for £89.99 and £99.99 respectively, the lowest price these products have ever been listed for.

Some shoppers, however, might not have been tempted into these deals as Amazon did not update all its web banners. When a shopper was on an Amazon device product page, the promo banner above did not have up to date prices, for example the Echo Show was advertised at £199.99 when it was actually half the price.

Amazon website 16 July 2018 (12pm)

 

Amazon did not promote the Amazon Echo Plus this year. Interestingly, it was priced at £139.99 on its own or with the Philips Hue E27 light bulb. This was £30 more than Black Friday 2017 and £20 more than Prime Day last year.

 

Are some deals “not what they seem”?

Consumer group Which? reiterated the same warning to shoppers that it did on Black Friday 2017, saying that some Prime Day deals are “not what they seem” and could have been available cheaper at other times.

Amazon may have offered new low prices on its own products, but some of its deals on branded items were not as good as previous sales events. Below are ten products that were on Prime Day deals but cheaper or the same price on Black Friday or Prime Day 2017.

The Barbie Pink Convertible Sports Car and Fisher-Price Beat Belle Playset were cheaper on Black Friday 2017 than Prime Day 2018. Amazon will have priced the products more competitively on Black Friday to compete for the increased toy spend in the run up to Christmas.

The Bosch PSB 1800 Cordless Combi Drill (two batteries) was prominently positioned as the fourth deal on the Amazon deal page. However, this product was £5 cheaper on Black Friday 2017 and £7.50 cheaper on Prime Day 2017.

 

How are Amazon’s rivals responding?

Argos, Currys and Very all ran ‘Flash Sales’ to compete with Prime Day. Currys countered Amazon the most from the retailers analysed, as not only did it launch ‘Flash Deals’ but it teamed up with Google Home, one of the major rivals of Amazon’s Echo range.

 

Currys website 16 July 2018 (12pm)

 

As part of the sponsorship, the top four deals were on Google Home products, with the Google Home on sale for £94, £10 cheaper than Ao, Argos, John Lewis and Very. Currys also sold the Google Home mini for £34, £4 cheaper than its rivals. However, John Lewis is likely to price match these items as part of its “Never Knowingly Undersold” promise.

Currys website 16 July 2018 (12pm)

 

The official Google store on eBay theoretically had the cheapest price for the Google Home. It was listed for £104, like the other retailers, although eBay had a 20 percent discount across a number of its official stores taking the price of the product down to £83.20. However, the product was out of stock at 9am on 16 July 2018 and completely removed from the store by midday.

 

Currys website 16 July 2018 (9am)

 

Were rival deals also better on Black Friday?

Even at £83.20, shoppers would have got a better deal on Black Friday 2017 when the Google Home was priced at £77.50 in Argos, Currys and John Lewis.

 


Brand View Daily Prices & Promotions 24 November 2017

 

Further to this, Brand View has found a number of instances where the deal price on Prime Day was higher than it was on previous days.

Examples include the “Apple iPad 2017 9.7 Inch Wi-Fi 32GB”, currently available on Argos at £289.00 as part of its ‘Flash Sale’ campaign. The device, despite being £10.00 cheaper than on Black Friday 2017, could be purchased for £279.00 at the end of May.

Similar to this, Currys is currently advertising the “SAMSUNG ecobubble WW90J5456FX 9 kg 1400 Spin Washing Machine” as being reduced to £399.00 from £599.99. However, the washing machine was available at a lower price (£379.00) between 25/12 and 03/01.

Very, also aiming at countering Amazon Prime Day, is featuring a number of “Pink” deals on “electricals, furniture, garden, fashion and lots more”. Among the deals is the “Nutri Ninja BL480UK Nutri Ninja 1000-watt Blender with Auto-iQ® – Silver”, reduced to £69.99 from an advertised £119.99. However, the product was only at £119.99 for two weeks in mid-February, prior to this it was available for £54.99, significantly lower than todays price.

 

Conclusions

Only a few hours after the kick-off of Prime Day 2018, Amazon has already fulfilled its promise and offered the best deals ever seen on its own devices. However, shoppers were right to take notice of Which?’s warning that some products would be cheaper outside of Prime Day, with some branded items cheaper on Black Friday 2017 and even in last years Prime Day.

As with previous years, rival retailers did not remain quiet and launched ‘flash deals’ campaigns on their websites instead. However, in some of these instances too, shoppers could have found prices lower than today’s.

The modern shopper is a savvy shopper and again, our analysis reaffirms that some shoppers are right to be cautious and may even be put off purchasing as they cannot be confident they are truly getting the best deal.

In a post-event analysis, Brand View will review how the number of deals fluctuated over the duration of the event, highlighting peak hours and differences across categories, while drawing a comparison to Prime Day 2017.

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Brand View is the leading global provider of price, promotion, product content and online product positioning analytics.