Prime Day: Amazon website suffers outages on its biggest annual sale

Noel Cummings
July 21, 2018

More than three quarters (76%) of Prime Day prices beat Black Friday prices, according to an email from deals site BestBlackFriday emailed to Retail Dive.

Amazon's website ran into some early snags Monday on its much-hyped Prime Day, an embarrassment for the tech company on the shopping holiday it created.

According to an Amazon press release, the top two best-selling products around the world were the Fire TV Stick with Alexa Voice Remote and the Echo Dot.

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Amazon said small and medium-sized businesses had sold more than $1 billion in since Monday, when the event started.

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While several social media defended the deals on offer, Queensland University of Technology retail expert Dr Gary Mortimer said it seemed Amazon was struggling to lure Aussies onto the site, and that the strategy of restricting the sale to Prime members may have cost the online retail giant. He said: "The buzz and excitement among Prime members creates a fantastic trading environment for businesses like ours and as each year passes, we're seeing a sharper rise in demand for our products from customers both here in the United Kingdom and around the world".

E-commerce analysts are expecting Amazon Prime Day 2018 to be the most popular online sales day for Amazon this year.

Following the launch of Prime in Australia last month, Amazon's app went from the ninth to the sixth most downloaded shopping app in the country.

"Prime Day 2018 has exceeded our expectations - sales are up more than 400 percent over a typical day".

Prime members continue to adopt the new savings benefit at Whole Foods Market at one of the fastest rates we've seen.

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Deals on Prime Day are not available to everyone. It does not have access to Amazon's internal sales numbers.

The hiccups, though, could have sent shoppers elsewhere during a key period when Amazon signs up new Prime members.

Though only available to U.S. consumers, Amazon offered savings at Whole Foods Market during Prime Day, with the best-selling item being organic strawberries.

In a statement, Amazon says that many people are shopping successfully, and that in the first hour of Prime Day in the US, customers ordered more items compared to the first hour a year ago.

For next year's Prime Day definitely take the bet that new records will be set, but Amazon should prep to make sure the onslaught of buyers can be handled.

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