Time is a valuable resource. With everything going on in our lives—work, family, kids—it’s tough to carve out a little of that sweet, sweet freedom for yourself. It’s the same reason you choose to stay in bed on Black Friday instead of battling bargain-hungry crowds down at the mall. It’s also the reason you miss all the big sales on Cyber Monday, because that end-of-month report isn’t going to write itself, now, is it?
Well, Amazon has not only found a way to capitalize on the historic lulls of mid-summer spending; it’s also figured out how to engage those busy consumers who prefer to use their time a little more productively than just browsing aisles of the local department store. Enter, Prime Day.
Prime Day: Summer’s Big Sale
What began in 2015 as a way to celebrate Amazon’s 20th anniversary has since morphed into one of the most anticipated shopping days of the year, next to Black Friday and Cyber Monday. Come mid-July, Amazon Prime members can take advantage of more than 24 hours of the most incredible savings on everything from consumer electronics, smartphones, and 4K HDR TVs, to clothing, summer gear, and groceries. This year, however, Amazon is doubling the pot and offering Prime subscribers not one, but TWO full days of amazing discounts. On July 15th and 16th, expect a slight slag in your internet connection, because everyone and their cousin will be hitting up Amazon for those unbelievably low prices.
If you think about it, the strategy makes sense: what better way to encourage purchasing in the lazy days of summer than to offer extended sales for busy people on the go? Prime Day has become so popular, in fact, other retailers like Walmart, Best Buy, and eBay have followed suit, offering deep discounts on respective items at the same time as the Amazon-sponsored event, which has since added some much-warranted competition to the marketplace. According to a new report from RetailMeNot, more than 250 retailers will throw their hat into the ring this year, extending deals of their own to the consumer public. That’s a 29 percent increase from last year, and a whopping 3,470 percent jump from 2015.
That said, summer is now the newly hyped season for spending, and retailers have to be prepared if they want to meet consumers’ expectations while maintaining, or even improving, profit margins. What kind of preparation, you ask? Well, it involves the delicate balance of time and execution. Since the sourcing process begins at least six months prior to expectant store delivery, retailers must align as closely as possible with suppliers and manufacturers to ensure orders meet regulatory compliance, clear customs, and arrive in stores at just the right time for Prime Day shoppers. But then the question remains: how does this all happen?
Connecting the Network for Complete Visibility
The answer: it comes down to supply chain visibility, which requires a level of agility most organizations lack, but actively pursue. Think about it—if you live in California, and your family lives in New York, there’s really no way to know exactly what they’re up to. Even if you dial them on the phone or exchange a few texts, the information you receive will be spotty at best. Did your brother send Grandma a birthday card? Did your Mom stop at the pharmacy after work? Unless you’re right there with them in the moment, you really don’t know that what they tell you is one hundred percent accurate.
Now, what if you guys were all connected on a network allowing for instantaneous, simultaneous, real-time communication? Then you’d be crystal clear on everyone’s whereabouts, no questions asked. The same theory applies to supply chain. By allowing complete transparency through the aid of a multi-enterprise platform, retailers, suppliers, manufacturers, and all supply chain partners get a complete, 360ₒ view of each and every transaction made along the way, from sourcing, purchase order management, sales order management, global trade management, and freight forwarding. With everyone on the same page when it comes to supply chain operations, there’s a way better chance of retailers and brand owners getting their products to market at just the right time. Like, say, July 15th?
Want to learn more about multi-enterprise networks? Read our blog to see how retailers, suppliers, and everyone across the supply chain can benefit from a connected platform.