Amazon's SMB Focus Kept Prime Members Searching For Holiday Deals

How does a marketplace justify offering ongoing sales, even after Thanksgiving Day and Christmas? Invent a holiday.

That's exactly what Amazon did to keep Prime members buying after the 2017 holiday season. The need to check-in and search for deals should be good for smaller brands that rely on advertising to attract consumers.

Digital Day, which takes place on Dec. 29, will offer thousands of online only deals of up to to 80% off on apps, games, movies, and eBooks, with 40% more deals than Digital Day in 2016.

Amazon admits that more than half of the items it sells online come from small businesses. Small businesses like InstaNatural that get their start selling products across the mega marketplace. Two big drivers of this trend point to Amazon Prime and Fulfillment by Amazon, which let businesses offer Prime two-day shipping.

From Thanksgiving through Cyber Monday, nearly 140 million items were ordered from small businesses and entrepreneurs. The company also saw the purchase of millions more Amazon devices purchased worldwide this year than last year's holiday season.



And on Tuesday, Amazon said it had topped its worldwide holiday sales record this year, with more than 4 million people opting to trial Amazon Prime in one week during the period.  

Prime Day, an Amazon made-up holiday, ran 30 hours of deals for Prime members. It was the biggest sales day ever in Amazon history, surpassing Black Friday and Cyber Monday. It's meant to help retailers extend holiday sales. 

Amazon also said tens of millions of Alexa-enabled devices were sold worldwide. Echo Dot and Fire TV Stick with Alexa Voice Remote were not only the top-selling Amazon devices this holiday season, but they were also the best-selling products from any manufacturer in any category across all of Amazon.

Shoppers spent lots of money this holiday season. Mastercard on Tuesday estimates  shoppers spent more than $800 billion during the 2017 season, more than in recent years past. The financial company attributes the uptick to growing consumer confidence, rising employment and early discounts.

Other forces will have an influence on Amazon's growth, such as the Interactive Advertising Bureau's focus on small, regional businesses in 2018.

Chris Kuist, senior vice president of research and impact at the IAB, said the IAB in 2018 will focus on getting a clear picture of the attributable to Google and Facebook, as well as the ad share the duo generates from local small and medium-sized businesses. It also wants to focus on getting companies to start projects and build technology that smaller businesses might need to succeed. 

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