Amazon Prime Day kicked off on Monday with a flurry of activity – including an unfortunate Amazon site crash as visitors vied for the best Prime deals of 2018.
Regardless of its rocky start, the annual shopping holiday is projected to break records. Industry experts have estimated Amazon could reach at least $3.4 billion within the event’s 36-hour window. According to Coresight CEO and Founder Deborah Weinswig, July 17 could be the biggest shopping day ever for Amazon in terms of revenues.
As the deal clock ticks on, there are two big differences to note about this year’s Amazon Prime Day:
- Discounts seep beyond the obvious. In previous years, consumers found the best deals on Kindles, Echo devices, and other in-demand electronics. However, NBC News reports that, according to Gartner L2’s Cooper Smith, this year shoppers will see “a much broader range of discounting across categories including fashion and groceries.” Cooper notes: “Fashion because the majority of Amazon’s new private label brands since last year’s Prime Day are apparel brands. Groceries because Amazon wants to accelerate Whole Foods’ customer acquisition and start conditioning Prime members to do their grocery shopping with them.”
- It’s not just about Amazon anymore. In the U.S. alone, 76 percent of online shoppers are “very likely” or “somewhat likely” to visit Amazon during Prime Day. This means the pressure is on for companies struggling to retain market share against Amazon. Retailers like Target, Walmart, and Kohl’s are working hard to grab a piece of the pie by marketing major discounts that mirror Black Friday. This is very good news for savvy shoppers – and a call to action for everyone else.
What to Do When Amazon Prime Day Ends
After the dust settles on Amazon Prime Day, sellers and brands must analyze their company/brand performance to glean new insights. Black Friday and the Christmas season are just around the corner, so now is the time to prepare. A great place to start is by developing strategies focused on product content and channel convergence.
That’s where Product Information Management (PIM), or Product Master Data Management (MDM), can help. From initial product discovery to research and fulfillment, a PIM/MDM solution aids in getting the right product to the customer at the right time. In the digital age, this helps win sales, build loyalty, and reduce the rate of returns.
Here are a few key points to remember:
Curate your product content: According to Forrester, providing differentiated digital experiences relies not only on product data, but more notably, curated product content. A PIM solution helps manufacturers and retailers offer corresponding product demonstrations, videos, manuals, images, etc. to help consumers make informed purchases. This is true whether the consumer is on a manufacturer’s website, Amazon product page, mobile app, etc.
Ensure consistent and accurate product information: Through a centralized PIM solution, organizations can ensure that verified, up-to-date product details and specifications are shared seamlessly across all touchpoints, including Google, your website, social media, online marketplaces including Amazon, etc. With PIM, product information is also more granular, which helps improve the searchability of items and aids in complying with standards such as GTIN and GDSN.
Facilitate product research: A PIM solution helps populate tools that aid shoppers in determining the desired size, color, fit, etc. A PIM solution can also help with upselling and cross-selling, along with creating wish lists and product preferences that deliver a personalized experience.
Offer seamless channel convergence and fulfillment: When competing with Amazon, retailers often have the advantage of meeting consumers in the channel of their choice. This requires seamlessly converging traditional channels like brick-and-mortar stores and catalogs with digital channels including e-commerce. Shoppers often review product features, options, and availability online first before coming to an actual retail location. With PIM, you can assure customers of accurate data on inventory levels and availability, even down to providing the aisle number of the product in the store. Furthermore, retailers can leverage PIM-powered Artificial Intelligence, Augmented Reality, and Virtual Reality to create a new shopping experience.
Learn How to Lift Sales and Increase Margins in Digital Channels
According to STORES Editor Susan Reda, “The path to consumer nirvana will consist of unique experiences, transparency, operational efficiencies, and vigilance on reducing pain points in the shopper journey.”
It’s interesting to note that all these attributes of retail success relate to PIM.
Today’s market is driven by a generation of consumers who expect rich product information when, where, and how they choose—and thrive on digital experiences.
To learn more about how your organization can keep up with the ever-increasing demand for product content in digital channels, listen to the Webinar, Building the Case for Better Product Information to Lift Sales and Increase Margins, with Forrester Analyst Bruce Eppinger.