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Amazon Prime’s the day, but do not go gentle into that goodnight


Today’s the day Amazon marks its 20th birthday. When it started life it was one of the first online merchants, selling books and gathering enough data about its customers so that it could eventually start selling them other things that match their interests.
Now it’s unleashed a day of promotions that it claims will put Black Friday deals in the shade: Amazon Prime Day, which is happening right now, in case you have been hiding from your inbox and were blissfully unaware.

It’s only available to Amazon Prime members and in theory should only affect those carriers that work with Amazon. But the bigger the rock you throw into the water, the bigger the ripples. And Amazon is one big rock. Amazon is famously tight-lipped where numbers are concerned. But there’s an estimated 50-60m Prime members worldwide. There could be 10m in the UK, and as many as half of them might be bagging bargains now .. right now, while you’re reading this, people are buying tonnes of stuff and they want it delivered tomorrow.

Putting Black Friday in the shade is quite a bold claim, but it’s shaping up to be that kind of week. Depending on who you listen to, last year’s Black Friday fell either into the move along people there’s nothing to see here camp, or led to so much weeping and gnashing of teeth that it wouldn’t have been out of place in one of Jesus’s parables. There were dark days for some though, and that’s something that no one could credibly deny.

Yet here we are in mid-July in the midst of something that could make Black Friday look like a car boot sale. Are we all doomed?

Maybe things are looking a bit black but it’s been a week for boldness, remember, and that’s not such a bad thing. Because no matter how dark it’s starting to look, someone who isn’t about to go gentle into that goodnight is – no, not Dylan Thomas – Dick Stead of Yodel.

Yodel has said that it will agree expected Black Friday next-day deliveries with its retail partners and will then cap the number of next-day drops it will accept. It will be the retailers responsibility to accurately forecast, predict and then share information on the amount of business it expects to drum up on 27 November.

Bold, you see.

And necessary too.

There are those in the delivery world that would tell you that if you can’t stand the heat you shouldn’t be on MasterChef. I should co-co.

Some of the things that will make dealing with peaks easier and more profitable are better collaboration, increased visibility of deals and promotions, and eradicating troughs and slumps through smaller, more frequent peaks. Putting a brave face on and hoping for the best won’t.

In the time it’s taken you to read this far, thousands upon thousands of Amazon Prime Day sales will have been made. However the dice fall, the next few days could be interesting.

Behind the scenes, we’ve secured five new speakers for our first ever eDelivery Conference, which takes place on 13 October, you’ll find details here.

If you haven’t yet subscribed to eDelivery why don’t you embrace change and go and do that right now? You’ll get our weekly newsletter summarising the main stories we’ve covered, and we’ll keep you informed of other big announcements, but we won’t spam you – that’s not how we stroll. You’ll find details on that here.

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