Better Deals, Amazon Fake Reviews Usher Consumers to Prime Day Competitors

44% of Shoppers Indicate That Amazon’s Recent Issues With Fake Product Reviews Will Impact Their Participation in Prime Day Shopping

Bazaarvoice, Inc., the provider of user-generated content (UGC) solutions, announced the results of its newest study, exploring the shopping habits of 1,000 US consumers who are planning to shop “Black Friday in July” deals this year.

Initially sparked by Amazon five years ago, “Black Friday in July” refers to the wave of sales that now crop up around Prime Day both from the retail giant and competing retailers hoping to gain a portion of consumers’ spend that led to over $4 billion in sales on Amazon last year. Bazaarvoice’s research explains what drives shoppers’ behavior around Amazon Prime Day and why they are opting to shop with retailers offering similar mid-summer sales.

Based on shopping activity across more than 6,000 retail sites, including those of top US retailers, Bazaarvoice saw a 21% increase in visitor traffic during Prime Day 2018 in comparison to typical traffic. Additionally, the number of shoppers increased by 15%, and the number of orders increased by 11%.

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Key findings from Bazaarvoice’s new study include:

  • With major retailers offering competing “Black Friday in July” sales, Prime Day shopping now extends beyond Amazon – Outside of Amazon, consumers plan to shop at Walmart (44%), Target (40%), Best Buy (24%) and Macy’s (18%) around Prime Day this year. Shoppers indicate that they shop outside of Amazon because they find better sales (32%) and because other retailers have physical stores nearby (31%).
  • Shoppers rank customer reviews as one of the most important factors influencing their “Black Friday in July” shopping – Shoppers plan to rely on online reviews to inform their purchase decisions, with 41% reporting that this was their primary method for planning out their “Black Friday in July” shopping. Almost half (44%) of shoppers indicate that Amazon’s recent issues with fake product reviews will impact their participation in Prime Day shopping; 37% will be more cautious when they shop at Amazon, and 7% won’t participate in Prime Day at all.
  • “Black Friday in July” sales kick off holiday shopping – Nearly half (48%) of “Black Friday in July” shoppers plan to take advantage of the sales for their holiday purchases. In general, consumers are primarily planning to buy apparel (51%), home goods and appliances (48%), and consumer electronics (44%). According to Bazaarvoice Network data, during Prime Day 2018, these same categories saw significant spikes in total order numbers: apparel and accessories, as well as kitchen appliances, both saw a 41% increase in orders, and smartwatches and wearables saw a 20% increase.

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Our research reinforces that Prime Day benefits more than just Amazon, said Joe Rohrlich, Chief Revenue Officer at Bazaarvoice. As a result of competing ‘Black Friday in July’ sales from other major retail players, consumers are researching and buying products across multiple online retailers around Prime Day. Mid-July is now one of the busiest times of the shopping season and serves as a precursor to holiday shopping. To prepare accordingly, brands and retailers should offer competitive pricing, take advantage of their brick-and-mortar presence, and showcase influential, authentic review content.

Using Google Consumer Surveys, Bazaarvoice surveyed 1,000 Black Friday in July shoppers about their shopping and browsing habits during the July sales that occur around Amazon Prime Day, which is rumored to be from July 15-17 this year. All respondents were located in the continental United States and included all ages and genders.

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