Founded in 2015 to commemorate Amazon’s 20th anniversary, Prime Day is a created holiday in which Amazon offers big deals to members who have signed up for their Amazon Prime service. Prime Day 2016 saw Amazon reach its highest sales ever for a single day, beating out Black Friday and Cyber Monday records.
On Prime Day 2017, Amazon shattered its single-day sales record again, increasing sales by 60% from the previous year. Though Amazon hasn’t given exact numbers, they claim “tens of millions” of Prime members bought something during the 30-hour sale.
AMS Expands for Prime Day with Lightning Deal Ads
This year Amazon offered vendors who advertise with Amazon Marketing Services the ability to promote products that were on sale during Prime Day. These “Lightning Deal” ads use the same targeting techniques as Product Display Ads, allowing brands to target by related category, interest, as well as specific ASINs.
Unlike Product Display Ads though, no ad copy appears in Lightning Deal ads – only a large Lightning Deal icon paired with a timer, which counts down the remaining time the deal is available. This creates a sense of urgency for the buyer, as Lightning Deals only run for a small period of time. The deal also ends when the set number of units allocated for the deal sells out. The length of time the ad runs and the number of units available is set up beforehand in Vendor Central.
For Prime Day 2017, content26 ran a Lightning Deal campaign for one of our clients that targeted competitor ASINs, in-brand ASINs, and Related Categories.
Results from the Prime Day Campaign
The campaign was enormously successful in creating brand awareness. The Lightning Deal ad racked up nearly 6 million impressions in a single day. Compared to the number of impressions on an average Tuesday, that is an uptick of 5x, which is a huge increase in the number eyes on the brand.
However, the increase of competition on Prime Day also created some problems. The Lightning Deal ad had significantly elevated clicks, but the Cost per Click rates were also much higher on Prime Day. The single-day ad spend of $6,383.33 only yielded $4,617.77 in actual sales, a rate of 138% ACoS. The return on advertising spend is clearly not ideal here but Amazon is constantly changing it’s ad services and algorithms so it’s too early to outright dismiss Prime Day Lightning Deal ads.
Prime Day AMS Relationships are Just Beginning
This is the first time that Amazon has allowed AMS campaign managers to use Lightning Deal targeted ads specifically for Prime Day sales. If Prime Day continues to grow each year as it has since 2015, the desire for companies to capitalize on these increased sales numbers will also surely increase. It’s clear that Amazon is still figuring out the best practices for its AMS clients on Prime Day.