Prime Day, Amazon’s Premier Shopping Event, Will Take Place Oct. 13-14

Due to Covid-19 concerns, the summer blowout sale was pushed back four months

The two-day premier sales and marketing event may cause unprecedented shifts in the holiday shopping retail landscape. Amazon
Headshot of MĂłnica Marie Zorrilla

After Prime Day didn’t take place this past July due to Covid-19 issues, no one really thought Amazon would cancel its biggest shopping event of the year. Last week, rumors of a new date began to circulate, and now the brand has finally confirmed that Prime Day will take place on Oct. 13… and Oct. 14. The ecommerce behemoth is breaking with tradition once again by extending the sales event to two days.

Per a statement from Amazon’s chief of worldwide consumer business, Jeff Wilke, this year’s double-feature Prime Day is being billed as the “the perfect opportunity for Prime members to get their holiday shopping done early from the comfort of their homes.” 

The event began as a single day in 2015. For its fifth Prime Day in 2019, Amazon rolled out a new 48-hour format for the shopping extravaganza. According to Adobe Analytics, by the end of the first 24 hours, Prime Day 2019 had already reached $2 billion in online sales, and 175 million items were sold over the course of the two days.

The immense popularity of Amazon’s Christmas in July site-wide clearance, which was created to boost sales during a typically slow retail season, spurred as many as 250 retailers to implement their own copycat strategy last year.

Back in April, when the news first broke that the brand would be pushing back its mega promotion, internal Amazon executive meeting notes obtained by Reuters suggested that the postponement could result in a $100 million loss. Prime Day is also a huge magnet for membership subscriptions, and Amazon’s general counsel, David Zapolsky, speculated that the doomsday scenario could look like a $300 million hit for the ecommerce giant.

Prime Day 2020 will in all likelihood be the unofficial kickoff to the holiday shopping season. Analysts say that’s because a delayed Prime Day will spur early holiday shopping traffic as consumers use the occasion to buy gifts instead of just stuff for themselves, as they’d more likely do during summer.

Amazon’s decision could prompt other retailers to follow suit, or persuade retailers who had toyed with the idea to start posting holiday promotions in October to go through with their plans. Per Peter Sheldon, art director of strategy at Adobe, it may be “the biggest online holiday season that we’ve ever seen.”


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@monicroqueta monica.zorrilla@adweek.com MĂłnica is a breaking news reporter at Adweek.
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