Amazon just announced that Prime Day is delayed to October.

Since 2015, Amazon Prime Day has served as a holiday in July for millions of consumers who want great deals and are members of the company’s premium loyalty program.

Prime Day serves as the summer equivalent of Black Friday and Cyber Monday, and while there are no documented sales, the annual event sees shoppers spend more than $4 billion.

It was recently announced that Prime Day won’t be held this year until early October due to COVID-19.

This seems like a “Prime ” opportunity for other retailers to stage their own “Prime Day” events this summer, leverage their loyalty programs, and create emotional connections that can build a sense of community and strengthen customer relationships.

 

Can Your Create Your Own Summer Shopping Holiday?

In the past, retailers have tried to ride the coattails of Amazon Prime Day and have their own special deals to take advantage of the massive online presence.

With no coattails to ride this summer, forward-thinking brands can schedule their own special ‘days’ that will attract their best customers and prospects to great deals.

Like Amazon uses Prime Day as an acquisition tool, this could also be a great time for brands to leverage their loyalty programs so consumers would buy items and become members.

A successful summer shopping event gives brands more customer data, increases engagement, builds emotional connections, and strengthens consumer relationships.

In recent years brands like Target and Walmart have offered huge deals to compete with Prime Day.

For example, Target has offered Target Deal Days – its biggest sale of the summer – with no membership required to shop for thousands of deals. During a two-day period, customers were able to enjoy deals on top national and only-at-Target brands across categories like home and apparel.

Perhaps this year, Target customers could also use Target’s same-day delivery and pickup options.

What unique deals and experiences could you offer your customers as retail reopens this summer?

 

Take Advantage of the Shift Toward Online Shopping

Another big reason why brands should consider having their own special shopping days this summer is because of the statistics around increased online shopping since the pandemic began.

Since the COVID-19 outbreak, nearly 75% of U.S. consumers have shopped for the first time with a new retailer. Also, 60% of consumers have increased their online shopping.

Product availability has been a major issue for consumers during the pandemic. Forty-four percent of consumers have opted for a new retailer because a product was unavailable, or there was an extended delivery timeline. This has actually impacted Amazon in a way that you can take advantage of.

Consider that 28% of consumers have moved away from Amazon as their preferred online shopping destination since Amazon’s shipping policies have changed.

For all these reasons, you should seize this opportunity and hold their own special shopping day this summer to spark customer engagement and increase loyalty program membership.

 

An Opportunity to Showcase Your Loyalty Program

Customer retention should always be a priority for retailers. But since the pandemic began, it has taken on an even larger importance.

Brands need to acquire customers, but as retail slowly reopens nationally, they need to retain their existing ones.

This is a great time to introduce customers to your loyalty program. That way, when the holiday shopping season comes around, you’ll have a leg up on Amazon.

Retention is a crucial piece of the customer loyalty puzzle, now more than ever.

An engaging loyalty program is a way to retain and attract new customers, but loyalty has gone beyond points and rewards.

It must be something bigger that taps into the emotional needs of consumers. Experiential benefits identify deeper motivations besides just saving money.

Your loyalty program should reflect the best of your brand. If your program meets and exceeds your customers’ needs and desires, you will retain members.

Eighty-eight percent of consumers are likely to choose a retailer whose program they belong to over another retailer even if the price is cheaper elsewhere.

Looking to revamp your loyalty program? Check out The Ultimate Guide to Loyalty Management.

 

Make This Moment Last Throughout the Year

Prime Day in October could pose a real concern for the 2020 holiday shopping season – a crucial time for all retailers after this rollercoaster of a year.

A special summer shopping day (or two) can build a unique community feeling for brands and impact customer behavior in a game-changing way.

Prime members have always been Amazon’s most loyal customers and they show that behavior throughout the year.

Brands can do the same thing this year with no Prime Day on the calendar this summer.

Make your own special day with targeted promotional campaigns or Back-to-School sales, and make it unique to your brand.

Loyalty isn’t just based on transactions. It is developed over time through every moment a customer interacts with a brand.

Think about creating your own special day this summer that can have far-reaching effects on your loyal customers.

Don’t let Prime Day take a bite out of your holiday sales in 2020.

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