Was Amazon’s Prime Day a Bust? My Thoughts & What I “Scored”!

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amazon prime day postmortem

A Dealer Hunter’s Take on Amazon’s Prime Day & What I Purchased

So yesterday was Amazon’s much hyped Prime Day. I admit that I have been a fan of Amazon for a long time and have enjoyed my fair share of their sales over the years. For that reason I was excited (along with a ton of other people) for yesterday’s “Better than Black Friday” prices.

As you may know by now, a ton of people were disappointed. People lashed out on social media given that the deals were few and the quantities were small. Even the items that were on sale for a good price went much too quickly. That left people almost ravenous for something good to purchase.

A Crazy Prime Day Example

amazon prime day postmortem
The baby category never ceases to amaze me. This is the current price.

Let me give you a great example. I just happened to be perusing through the sale yesterday looking for something good to buy. I noticed that a 3 pack of Diaper Genie refills was going to become a Lightning Deal in 8 minutes. I then set a timer on my browser. When it went off, I clicked over and went to purchase. At first it was processing and then it went straight to a waitlist. This was about a minute after the sale began.

Now lets back up here a minute. This Diaper Genie 3 pack normally sells on Amazon for $17.62. They were selling it for $15. That isn’t a huge discount. Either they had such a low quantity available for sale or people were desperate to buy something or to “get a deal” on something. I was going to buy them because we need them, but to be honest I can probably do better with discounted gift cards at another store.

Other Great Deals Dominated the Day

amazon prime day postmortem

I monitor deal sites and didn’t see anything great from Amazon or Walmart who claimed to have a huge sale too. If I had a dollar for every killer tv deal I saw then I would be rich, so those don’t interest me much. There came a point a few years ago where I had to stop buying tvs. When you have 2 for every member of your family then it ain’t a good deal anymore.

Anyway, so Amazon and Walmart were a bust, but Amex kept me busy all day with their Amex Express Checkout deals and eBay came on later in the day with a great offer on gift cards. In other words, that is where my focus shifted. Amazon was a yawn for me, but it seems even normal people who don’t stare at deals all day long felt the same way as well.

What Did I Get

amazon prime day postmortem
My Prime Day “score”!

So I made a total of two purchases on Prime Day. First, I purchased a $45 Amazon gift card multipack, since they gave a $10 promotional credit with that. Made perfect sense. Second, I purchase Amazon Elements baby wipes at 60% off. I happened to buy these wipes when they launched with a similar discount and they are very good. It is amazing how babies take over your life!

Conclusion

Amazon didn’t miss out on anything in my opinion. Even though people were disappointed, they will learn and tweak this concept. They continue to gain traction for their Prime ecosystem and I believe overall that is a good thing for the company. If you are looking for a more data driven analysis on Prime Day, Forbes has a great article.

Did any of you score a decent deal on Prime day? Let us know in the comments!


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13 COMMENTS

  1. I had the same type of experience on the Diono Radian RXT car seat. I clicked ” Add to cart” literally within 3 seconds of the deal going live. I got the dreaded spinning circle of death for about ten seconds following which it asked me to get on the wait list. It was my fault for not learning the strategy of adding the item to my cart less than 15 minutes before the deal went live to get the sometimes automatic lightning deal price. I don’t have a problem with it…but I still wish I could have gotten the item. Brilliant idea from Amazon…the increase in sales shows their marketing success.

    We are all frustrated by Black Friday and other mass marketing strategies. However, we keep coming back year after year for the same experience. They must be doing something right

  2. Ya. Totally man. I had spent too long on Amazon looking for the silver lining.

    But this was ultra YMMV. I think some people could have gotten really good stuff, but not Black Friday style.

    Like I got a lot of protein shakes for cheaper than other sites and bought over $75 so I got $25 GC. Then I did slow shipping for another $5. Worth it for me. Then use your Discover CC 5% CashBack for Amazon.

    Also there are still other savings:
    10-off-10 on amazon with discover card first time cashback point users
    15-off-50 on amazon with amex membership rewards points

    I used both. Lots of savings if you have stuff to buy at Amazon.

  3. There were actually some good deals on clothing, shoes, and luggage, at 30% off. And these weren’t hyped on the home page, so they didn’t sell out and even late yesterday there was plenty to choose from. Got some Briggs and Riley luggage that were already a good price (discounted off list), so 30% off that was even better. I think the big problem is Amazon way over-hyped things – “more deals than Black Friday” wasn’t anywhere close to reality.

  4. I looked and nothing grabbed me. It looked like inventory clearing rather than big sales on top items. And the savings were nowhere near Thanksgiving-level. What a huge non-event.

    I get the Nursery Fresh Refill for Diaper Genie, 272 Count, Pack of 4 btw. They’re just as good and a much better value. There’s currently a 20% coupon.

    • I use 13 gallon trash bags wrapped around an empty diaper genie plastic ring and held on by a rubber band. You can fit more crap in there (literally). I’m a practical man (maybe a bit of Scrooge Mcduck in me too), and I’d prefer not to have to empty that thing after a few diapers.

  5. I got the same Amazon elements wipes on sale with the code, on two accounts. My account didn’t have that coupon, but I did get the tub refill sensitive skin wipes for a better value than the smaller flip top ones (the fact I know this much detail about baby wipes is almost embarrassing!). Also used a $5 credit from an inquiry as to where my prime item was a few weeks ago (was business day 4). On my wife’s account I was able to use the $2.50 clipped coupon and they only had the 6 pack of flip top wipes on backorder, although I was able to pay and lock in the discount.

    I did one of the $45 gc deals for the $10 promo certificate. Also found Asics shoes on sale. Given that my boats are size 15 4e I have limited options. Also have used the gel kayano shoes for about 5 years and they’re amazing. Getting 2 pairs for $160 plus 6.6% cb was a no brainer.

    The lightning deals, put bluntly, were horrid. If it didn’t sell out in less than 30 seconds (literally) then it was on items that were at their highest price points. It makes you wonder if they’re pulling the old salesman trick of temporary setting higher prices so that the discounts were in fact only bringing said item back down to prices that are STILL higher than several low price points this year. A security camera at better than black Friday prices? Um, no. In fact it wasn’t even better than prices earlier this year.

    They’re really tapping into the sheep and those who are sucked into the Amazon culture in hopes to gain deeper roots. I’m sure they didn’t mind their stock hit an all time high either. I’m by no means the brightest guy in the world, but I’d absolutely consider myself an educated consumer. With the ease of access to knowledge out there I’d hope people didn’t get hooked into ‘deals’ that weren’t.

    I also saw a few posts on SD of people taking the $70 off your order bonus for the Chase Amazon. Made me shake my head when they felt they got great value of $70 for a hard pull. My wife got this Amazon card about 6 years ago and this is the fi rst time it’s been used in at least 4 lol (for $20 promo code). It still has her maiden name on it and we were married in 2012! Even then, I only paid $1 with the card. Bought a gift card with my SM card (less $1) to pay the rest. I really wish I could’ve given them the link to Sallie Mae cc and said this is much better if you’re looking for direct 5% at Amazon.

    Learning MS has really given everyone in this hobby a great sense of awareness and an indirect education in advanced consumerism 101.

    • I was wondering when you were gonna comment… so how come no Jet.com plug here? You have to stay in character!

      But youre right about taking the Red Pill. Now you cant go back. The Matrix has been revealed.

      • Haha, I don’t want to come off as Anti-Amazon and don’t want to ruffle feathers of people who feel a personal attachment with them. The truth is I feel no attachment to any business. Wherever provides the best return for my money+ time is where I’m going. It’s like that quote in the movie Cinderella Man “My heart’s for my family, Joe. My brains and my balls are for business…”

        Jet is launching in a few days though, and it looks like they just threw up a 6 month free membership if you squeeze in here last minute.

  6. Totally man. But that is why people need to discuss so the lurkers can read and benefit. Hopefully, they will contribute too and share good deals when they are ready.

    Also, I have a Jet.com account and I am impressed with what they are trying to do, but I need to see how long this lasts.

    The biggest thing is their shopping portal. I was like WTF they have a shopping portal? Amazon needs a shopping portal!

    Also I find it very interesting to get extra savings of 0.25% w/ VC or MC and waive FREE return to save even more. Just as you had mentioned before, you buy more save more and it pays to plan.

    I dont plan. Thats why I like Amazon. On the fly shipping to my locker. I dont need to be home and Sunday delivery.

    I look forward to seeing how Jet grows. If this keeps up, I may need to keep both accounts. Not sure about $99 and $50 membership fees though.

    Huge savings with Jet.com though. I can lie, but will see. TBD.

    • Ha, Jet.com is blocked from Slickdeals you know that? I had a post completely removed by a moderator on a front page cooler being sold at homedepot.com. They obviously don’T want people finding it elsewhere and lose out on the affiliate commissions.

      You’ll only spread the word so far before you’ll run into sources of deals that are not honest. Only emphasizes the fact that this blog does a great job of not censoring nor filtering information for personal gain. You’ll see Shawn literally inform people of cash back links that give better value to newbies who’d otherwise use his links.

      Obviously at the end of the day people and businesses have to make a living. For online business especially though it’s getting increasingly harder to pull the wool over people’s eyes.

      Jet is going to indirectly provide an approximate profit margin on items as their model includes zero profit margins on items sold. It gets more and more interesting the further down the rabbit hole we go as even the average consumer is becoming more aware of pricing and more comfortable with online purchases in general. We can definitely thank Amazon for this too. Two years ago I convinced my father in law it was safe to buy a $20 item off Amazon and that his information was in fact at least if not more secure than him buying it locally. A few months back I went to his house to help him set up a treadmill lol. You guessed it, he bought it online.

      Where was I even going with all this?? Lol. Anyways yeah, there’s so much to learn with online shopping and the landscape is constantly changing and it’s up to people to find what works for them (not always about the lowest price) and read between the lines on the abundance of info out there.

      • Ya man. We need to create a FT forum just for this blog! Maybe we can convince Shawn to start one up. Just for our community. I think that would be pretty cool. Grassroots then becomes something huge. We should be at DO! Or the Frequent Traveler University. Maybe I will meet you sometime man.

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