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Amazon Prime Day: A two-day saving spree

Let’s get right into it with a couple of experts on what Amazon Prime Day means for shoppers globally and in the UAE. Later, we'll dig into some items on sale

In 2020, Prime members saved more than $1.4 billion on a vast array of products Noon.com is competing strongly with their own ‘Big Yellow Sale’ over the same period The UAE's e-commerce market is expected to reach a monumental $17 billion

Let’s get right into it with a couple of experts on what Amazon Prime Day means for shoppers globally and in the UAE. Later, we’ll dig into some items on sale.

The first expert is Richard Nicoll, Chief Strategy & Capability Officer at Liquid who said it will be one of the world’s biggest shopping events in the MENA region. 

“There is no doubt that there are some great deals to be had. In 2020, Prime members saved more than $1.4 billion on a vast array of products. Last year’s Prime Day was a record-breaking event for SMEs too, with worldwide sales surpassing $3.5 bn, an astonishing increase of nearly 60% year-on-year,” Nicoll commented. 

He said this year’s event has been timed earlier than usual in a bid to boost traditionally slow Q2 sales, which could be especially useful for Amazon, as the retail landscape starts to level out again and shoppers return to stores. 

So, what can we expect to see from this year’s Prime Day?

“As we’re seeing in other markets, retailers are quick to engage in a battle for consumer attention. Amazon will want to attract new members to its Prime offering, whilst appeasing existing members. Noon.com is competing strongly with their own ‘Big Yellow Sale’ over the same period (a sale that will last for 3 days). Furthermore, it will be interesting to see the nature of ‘deals’ on offer as Noon performed better than was expected in the ‘discount’ war of the last Black Friday,” Nicoll opined.     

“Breadth of offers on products will be far-reaching. We’ll see a diversification from the traditional deals on Electronics, to more deals on a much wider range of inventory. Last year we saw strong traction in top-selling categories including bedding, nutrition and wellness, arts and crafts, and health care. This year expect to see deals across apparel, home and lifestyle, and even more FMCG.”

Read: Online shopping abounds – but physical stores are not dead

Read: Q1 shopping index: Global digital commerce grew 58%

Nicoll continued that convenience will inevitably be a big factor in all Prime Deals. Prime delivery, same-day shipping, and free international shipping will be offered to meet shoppers’ new post-COVID-19 expectations around time, convenience, and monetary savings.

“Amazon advertising will play a massive role in what we actually see on the site. With a new and heavy focus on sponsors, so brands, products, and displays will see the highest bidder have their portfolio front and center, meaning that what we’ll be shown is not necessarily be what we’ve been searching for,” Nicoll said.   

“All in all, whilst Prime Day will offer great opportunities for shoppers, the momentum around marketplace shopping festivals will continue to pose real strategic challenges for brand owners here in the region.  After all, the aggressive need to chase eyeballs and sales by ‘fishing where the fish are’ can come at a cost to short-term margins and long-term brand equity.”

Next is Murat Yoldas Ertugrul, MENA region VP at Emakina, who believes Amazon Prime Day 2021 is marked this year by how closely linked technology is to empowering growth in the Middle Eastern e-commerce sector.

“We’re emerging from a period that not only forced us to change how we do things but also forced us to change how we think about doing certain things. In some instances, it’s even made us wonder why we do things. All of this has impacted how we shop and what we buy when we shop,” Ertugrul said.

“Consumers have different spending priorities this year, with the traditional boundaries between B2B and B2C collapsing – customers now demand convenient, seamless, and personalized experiences across every touchpoint.”

According to recent research of ten markets in the region, including the UAE and Saudi Arabia, up to 40% of respondents are now shopping online more than they were before the new coronavirus outbreak.

“Delivering a customer experience that exceeds expectations is the key to successful e-commerce strategies, and we cannot talk about digital growth without mentioning the lockdown that prompted an increasing number of consumers to shop online,” Ertugrul added. 

He said that by 2025­­, the UAE’s e-commerce market is expected to reach a monumental $17 billion.

“Amazon has an unprecedented opportunity to own the narrative this year, further cementing the loyalty of die-hard fans, and welcoming the newbies with open arms – and no intention of letting them go,” Ertugrul concluded.

Amazon Prime Day sales 

Amazon’s 2021 Prime Day is set to take place this week, with two days of site-wide deals for Amazon Prime customers and savings of up to 67%, according to UAE’s daily The National.

The sale will kick off at midnight GST on Monday, with deals on high-end brands, across electronics, home, gaming, beauty, fashion, books, and toys.

Amazon Prime Day discounts with electronic sales are up to 25% savings on the Anker Soundcore Life P2 Bluetooth Wireless Earphones and up to 35% on Amazon Kindle devices, including the Kindle Paperwhite.

For mobile phones and accessories, one can save up to 24% on the Xiaomi Redmi Note 10S Dual SIM, up to 21% on the OnePlus 8T, and up to 19% on the Samsung Galaxy S20 Ultra Dual SIM.

For computers and accessories, 33% savings are available on the Microsoft Surface Pro 7 2-in-1 laptop and up to 18% on HP laptops.

Savings on Video games can reach 40% on the Sony PlayStation Virtual Reality Bundle and up to 12% on the Oculus Quest 2 All-In-One Virtual Reality Headset.

As for toys, buyers can save up to 10% on the Xiaomi Electric Scooter Pro 2.

Amazon Prime Day deals are available to Amazon Prime customers who pay or paid a membership fee of $38 a year or $4.4 a month.

A free 30-day trial is available for new customers.