This year’s Prime Day generated more than $12 billion in sales worldwide – and CPG brands were a big beneficiary during the annual event.
Historically known as a trade event for closing deals on tech and gadgets, Prime Day is becoming increasingly important for food and beverage startups trying to grow their Amazon businesses. With so many Americans looking for deals amid inflation, grocery sales have taken some of the Prime Day sales this year, with one in 10 buyers add a household or grocery item to their cart. According to numerator data, 29% of Prime Day shoppers have purchased CPG products this year. Amazon has yet to break down official CPG revenue, but Numerator estimates the category topped 20% of total Prime Day sales this year.
During this year’s two-day event, a number of CPG startups took the opportunity to win new customers, launch subscription plans and increase overall digital sales. Executives from a number of food and beverage companies told Modern Retail that the overall uptick in traffic on Amazon has helped their brands gain traction in the platform’s noisy field. They’ve used a variety of tactics to entice customers — like increasing subscriptions and discounts — to help them climb Amazon’s rankings.
“An absolute must” for CPG startups
Plant-based superfood blend brand Your Super saw a surge in sales during Prime Day this month. During this year’s run, Your Super saw 2.5 times the number of impressions, clicks and conversions across all of its sponsored campaigns, said co-founder Kristel de Groot.
“Prime Day is an absolute must for any serious brand selling on Amazon,” de Groot said. She noted that there is typically 3 to 4 times more traffic in the storefront during the two-day event, compared to normal weekdays. Buyers, she said, are already looking for deals, “and we’re looking to move products and increase our overall sales.” Your Super has run ads and deals during Prime Day for the past two years since it launched on Amazon in 2020, but said this year was the most promoted and impactful.
This year, Your Super offered 20% off most of its products, including best-selling powder SKUs like Super Green, Moon Balance, and Plant Collagen. Ahead of the event, the brand ramped up its advertising efforts on Amazon to reach more users during Prime Day. “We got 5 times new customers through our sponsored campaign, which was huge,” said de Groot.
Baking brand Supernatural has also taken Prime Day more seriously than ever this year.
Supernatural founder Carmel Hagen said the brand has been on Amazon since its launch in 2016, but has sporadically participated in Prime Day promotions over the years.
“This year, we prepared ahead by running more ads and promoting our bestsellers,” Hagen said. “We saw a 300% increase in sales over last year, and lots of new people put our products in their carts.”
Since Supernatural’s products are typically popular during baking holidays, Hagen said the company will use Amazon’s DSP to retarget its Prime Day customers during the holiday season later this year.
Investing in Prime Day Marketing Campaigns
While direct sales are the primary focus of Prime Day campaigns, some brands have used the event to increase brand awareness on Amazon. “Bidding and converting on the right keywords allows us to increase our organic rankings on Amazon,” said Your Super’s de Groot.
Prebiotic soda brand Poppi, which launched in March 2020 via Amazon, had its biggest week on the site last week. The platform accounts for a large portion of Poppi’s sales, given that Poppi fulfills all of its digital orders through its Amazon store — and not through its own website. The company is also sold at local and national retailers, such as Target, Sprouts and Whole Foods.
Poppi co-founder Allison Ellsworth told Modern Retail “we achieved 14 truckloads of Poppi sales and over half a million dollars in the seven-day period.”
Ellsworth credited the brand’s multi-channel marketing tactic that promoted selling throughout the week, which helped drive traffic and conversion rates. To drive customers to its Amazon store, Poppi launched its Big Flavor Energy campaign, which included TikTok influencer posts, OOH advertising, field marketing and giveaways.
These promotions of Poppi’s 30% discount helped the brand reach number 27 on the Prime Day flash deals page, Ellsworth said. Poppi also ranked number 9 on the best-selling grocery list. “We would have been happy to do 3-5 times the sales, but we ended up doing about 15-18 times,” Ellsworth said, with about 85% of those sales coming from new Poppi customers.
Using Prime Day for Retention
Charlotte Mostaed, vice president of marketing at kombucha maker Health-Ade, said the annual event “is a great time” to welcome new consumers to try products by offering a deep discount that hesitant customers wouldn’t want. not pass up.
However, Health-Ade wanted to use the steep Prime Day discounts to encourage restock shipments.
In turn, the company offered bigger-than-usual savings to those who signed up for Subscribe & Save; the discount was 30% off during Prime Day for Health-Ade’s Pop line, down from the normal price of 10% off the regular price. “As a result, we’ve seen a significant increase in Prime Day subscribers,” Mostaed said.
“We’ve also moved Prime Day up with a small discount so those who plan ahead don’t have to wait,” Mostaed said. Once Prime Day arrived, Health-Ade offered its best discount of the year during the 48-hour window, and as a result, the company saw 5 times the amount of revenue compared to its usual levels of revenue from e-commerce.
Sandro Roco, founder of sparkling water brand Sanzo, told Modern Retail that Prime Day is quickly becoming a game of brand awareness and a speed engine for the company.
Last year, the brand entered Prime Day for the first time, where it achieved 14th place for the top-selling sparkling water during the two-day event. This year, the company climbed to 12th place, according to Roco, surpassing SKUs of brands like Sparkling Ice, Alani Nu, Perrier and San Pellegrino.
“Despite slowing grocery sales on Amazon recently, Prime Day deals have given us another boost this year,” Roco said. During the two-day Amazon Prime Day sale, Sanzo offered 30% off all of its sparkling water flavors, including its best-selling variety pack.
Overall, this year, Sanzo doubled its Prime Day sales compared to last year.
Now the company is extending its sale with a 10% discount after Prime Day until July 23. Roc said.
As more CPG brands navigate Amazon’s algorithm, Prime Day becomes a more important part of their strategy on the site.
“Prime Day is the only time a year we go deeper into promotion because it’s the cheapest way to get that first customer,” Poppi’s Ellsworth explained.