Though Amazon’s Prime Day sales event receives more attention and hype, the promotional sales holiday of Chinese online retail giant Alibaba generates more revenues by far. Single’s Day, as Alibaba’s promotional sales holiday is known, generated sales of approximately $18 billion in 2016. This contrasts sharply with the $2 billion in sales that Amazon is expected to generate this year.
Single’s Day, as a ‘holiday’ not as a sales holiday was founded in the 90s by college students who were against Valentine’s Day and it occurs on November 11. Last year the total sales generated on the Alibaba promotional sales holiday surpassed the combined sales on Cyber Monday and Black Friday in the United States. In the initial five minutes upon the promotional sales holiday kicking off, orders worth $1 billion were placed.
Open to all
One advantage that Single’s Day has over Prime Day is that it is not restricted to premium subscribers only as discounts are available to all shoppers. Also, Single’s Day has been around longer than Prime Day which started three years ago to mark the 20th birthday of Amazon.
In this year’s Prime Day Amazon has disclosed that the sales generated broke records and even managed to surpass the last year’s results of Cyber Monday and Black Friday. According to Amazon the recently concluded promotional sales holiday saw sales rise by over 60%. The number of shoppers across the 13 countries in which the promotional event was running also rose.
Open for longer
One possible reason for the record sales and the increase of 50% in the number of shoppers participating was the fact that the number of hours the event was running was increased from 24 hours to 30 hours. There were also three countries added as participants in the promotional event.
In 2016 Amazon’s promotional sales holiday was also at the time the biggest sales day on record. Then sales had risen by over 60% compared to the sales figures from 2016. Orders in the United States had also risen by over 50% compared to the previous year.
Besides using Prime Day to increase sales, Amazon also used the event to promote company products and Prime loyalty program signups. According to the Seattle, Washington-based online retail giant the number of new members who signed up for the Prime program increased by the largest amount in the history of the company.
“[This] demonstrates that Amazon is succeeding in its strategy to build an ecosystem that is undeniably attractive to all customers,” said Magid’s retail division senior vice president, Matt Sargent, in an interview with CNBC.