As millions of people stay home to battle the spread of the coronavirus, Amazon has seen a massive uptick in orders. For some products, like masks and antibacterial wipes, it is limiting purchases to better supply healthcare facilities. Nonetheless, the e-commerce giant is keeping its warehouses open to continue delivering goods.
Now, it has decided to delay Prime Day until “at least August.”
The move will help Amazon keep up with regular orders through the summer as the coronavirus pandemic isn’t expected to let up anytime soon.
Yet Another Delay
The delays caused by the coronavirus have been far-reaching. No industry is unaffected by the wave of cancellations and delayed events.
Prime Day typically occurs in July. This year, Amazon is pushing it back until August. However, that timeframe could again change if the world can’t get COVID-19 under control. Hopefully an August deadline gives Amazon enough time to catch up with the abundance of orders and also scale up its logistics chain to deal with the surge from Prime Day.
The event is Amazon’s very own Black Friday style sale that allows it to feature deals on its Alexa-enabled hardware and clear out excess inventory in its warehouses. Prime members are able to snag some of the best deals of the year.
Last year, the 48-hour sale was the “largest shopping event in Amazon history.” The company reports that Prime Day 2019 outsold the previous Black Friday and Cyber Monday combined.
The sale originally started back in 2015 and wasn’t nearly as large. However, it has grown over the years as the popularity of Amazon’s Prime service has skyrocketed. Last year, Prime members purchased more than 175 million items on Prime Day.
As a result of the delay, Amazon is anticipating a $100 million loss due to “excess devices it may now have to sell at a discount.” While that isn’t ideal for the company, users should keep their eyes out for deals on the latest gadgets.
The Right Thing
Although many will be disappointed that Prime Day is delayed, the move is undoubtedly for the best. Amazon is already dealing with more orders than it can handle as people around the world adjust to quarantining at home.
As customers continue to flood its online store, Amazon has already had to delay some orders. It is also prioritizing orders of essential items like household staples and food.
Meanwhile, the company is dealing with internal problems of its own. As the pandemic worsens, warehouse workers and delivery drivers have repeatedly claimed that Amazon isn’t doing its part to protect them. This has led to protests, strikes, and some controversial firings.
Nonetheless, there isn’t much that Amazon (or anyone) can do that isn’t already being done. Shutting down the world’s largest e-commerce platform at the exact moment it is needed the most simply isn’t an option.
To help deal with the surge, Amazon is hiring 100,000 workers to keep up. It’s unclear how long those workers will stay on board after the pandemic ends. It wouldn’t be surprising if many are retained through Prime Day to help deal with those orders.