Prime Day is going to look different this year.  

While the actual date for Prime Day 2020 is still unknown, most brands are preparing for early-to-mid October. As such, Prime Day will “kick off” the holiday shopping season this year, and advertising strategies will have to be adjusted accordingly.  

To start, keep this timeline in mind:

Q4 Sales Are More Important Than Ever

Q4 is already a period where many brands traditionally generate a large portion of their sales. This year’s situation – lockdown, supply chain disruption, and restrictions on shipping at Amazon in the first half of the year - has made Q4 even more important for many brands.

This is especially true for non-essential brands that weren’t allowed to ship from Amazon during the beginning of lockdown. These brands are likely to be behind on sales for the year and need to get aggressive with their holiday promotion strategies.

However, even CPG brands, many of which were deemed essential by Amazon and saw a surge in online demand during the pandemic, are facing an important Q4, as consumers continue to flock to eCommerce. Maintaining market share and capturing new-to-brand consumers, in the middle of the holiday promotion whirlwind, will be no easy task.

Leading Up to Prime Day

Start to launch your paid search and display campaigns early to build up the relevance score for those campaigns. Without a strong relevance score, you will struggle to win ad placements regardless of your bid amount. Launching early will also give you plenty of time to test:

Audit your product pages and make sure they’re up to date and SEO friendly. Pay special attention to the long product description on your Amazon product page. Titles, bullets, and product descriptions are also important ones, but make sure to add pictures and videos (between 15 and 60 seconds) on all your product pages as well.  

Lastly, be prepared and plan ahead for the extra demand on Prime Day. Have all your paperwork and approvals ready so that you can easily sign off on extra inventory or budget if the demand exceeds what you initially planned.

It’s also wise to have backup options for shipping. Consider partnering with a third-party provider like Flexe or Deliverr to fulfill some of your Prime shipping. Take the onboarding time with such a provider into consideration.

On Prime Day itself, have a plan and established budgets for the day to avoid overspending. Using Pacvue, you can set budget caps, dayparting to pace spend throughout the day, and receive alerts when campaigns run out of budget.

Prepare Your Deals

Amazon has updated their deal requirements for Q4 2020 to make it easier for brands to run deals on both Prime Day and for the holiday season.

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One of the best ways to drive additional traffic to your deals is to use your brand store. Update your brand store for the holiday season, or create a specific sub-page for your “featured products.” You can begin to build awareness for your products prior to Prime Day. When the deal is live, be sure to include the deal widget on your brand page, and drive traffic from Sponsored Brand ads, display, and offline sources.

What to Do After Prime Day

Here are a few tips on how to handle the influx of new customers you are likely to generate after Prime Day:

Being well prepared is key this Prime Day and Holiday season. It’s reasonable to expect that your spend will be higher this year, so be efficient with your budgets. Start your campaigns early to build up the relevance score and increase your chances of winning bids. Lastly, have a strategy for retargeting new customers to make the most of new online shoppers.  

Prime Day is just the start of what’s sure to be a rollercoaster of a Q4 this year. Being agile and embracing budget fluidity to respond quickly to shifts in demand will be the path to success.