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Amazon Prime Day UK - what we learned for 2020

the best amazon prime day deals 2019
(Image credit: Future)

So that's Prime Day wrapped up for another year and what an event it was, lasting 48 hours and featuring more deals than ever before. But before we start looking forwards to Amazon Prime Day 2020, or getting excited about Black Friday 2019, let's see how the much-hyped sale performed this time.

Our main roundup page of the best Amazon Prime Day deals was absolutely stuffed with fantastic bargains and we published over 200 articles giving specific shout outs to the offers that stopped us in our tracks and had us reaching for our wallets.

We were delighted to find some of our favourite tech items getting discounts better than anything else we'd seen this year. Actually, many of them were even better than Black Friday, proving once again that Prime Day is a fantastic opportunity to pick up a great deal.

There's no denying that Amazon's own devices got the biggest discounts (more on those later) as Fire TV Sticks, Kindles, Echo smart speakers, Fire tablets and the like got bonkers bargains. We also saw plenty of deals across TVs, fitness trackers, headphones, Apple products (yes really!), and even a range of flagship smartphones for the first time.

Prime members were snapping up products throughout the 48-hour event with over 175 million items sold. That's more than Amazon sold on Black Friday and Cyber Monday combined. That's a massive increase from an already impressive 100 millions products sold during the previous Prime Day sale, which was admittedly a shorter event at 36 hours.

amazon prime day deals

(Image credit: Amazon)

How competitive were Prime Day deals at Amazon?

A price monitoring company called Minderest (as reported by PR Newswire) compared prices of 566 of the most in-demand products over Prime Day to see how they stacked up against rivals stores listed on Google Shopping. 

58.05% of them were cheapest on Amazon UK, compared to a massive 81.9% in the US where Amazon is annihilating the competition on a regular basis. If anything, that UK figure is a testament to how competitive the UK market it is and we did notice other stores having big sales of their own around Prime Day and a lot of price matching happening too. It's also a solid reminder to double check prices elsewhere on Prime Day (we always do this before highlighting a deal for you) as you might get a better deal from the likes of John Lewis, Currys and Argos.

Amazon devices, as expected, got the best deals with an average 45% reduction on their RRPs compared to 37% in 2018. According to audience research from Numerator, 65.8% of surveyed shoppers said they were extremely or very satisfied with the deals available.

What were people searching for on Amazon Prime Day?

Analytics experts Hitwise tracked down the data for what people were pumping into Amazon's search bar. Nintendo Switch was the winner with over a million searches in the UK - a shame that the Switch deals weren't actually that good for a second year running though. 'Laptops' was close behind (905k) and Prime Day was actually great for picking up a great deal there. 'Fitbit' was the next biggest item with close to 600k searches and multiple versions of the trackers/smartwatches were on offer for those searchers. 

Elsewhere, the top ten searched items were rounded out by Audible, PS4, Kindle, Fire Stick, Alexa, Echo Dot and Lego. Overall though, interest in tech and gadgets seems to once again have been the driving force behind most peoples' visit to Amazon for Prime Day.

amazon echo deals dot prices sale

(Image credit: Future)

What products sold the most on Prime Day?

But what actually sold well. Amazon's own devices absolutely dominated the top ten here with the Fire TV Stick coming out on top and the Echo Dot not far behind. Both had the cheapest prices we'd ever seen. The Kindle Paperwhite had a great day too. The Echo Show 5 was only released a few weeks before, but a £20 discount made it a fantastic deal for a smart speaker with a screen with a price that made it much better value than the older Echo Spot and larger Echo Show screens.

The PlayStation Classic may have disappointed many at launch with its selection of installed games, but a super low price on Prime Day inspired plenty of "why, the hell not" purchases for fans of Sony's early steps into gaming. A Neos Smart Cam was another surprise inclusion in the top ten.

The best Amazon Prime Day deals of 2019

While we're ages away from Amazon Prime Day 2020, it certainly doesn't hurt to take a look at what the best deals were in 2019's summer event. Naturally, these prices are long gone now, but these are the sort of bargains you should expect to see in 2020.

We expect to similar offers around Black Friday for sure too, although the all-time lowest prices on many of Amazon's own devices are usually saved for Prime Day to be honest. But we're only talking small amounts really.

Amazon Prime £79.99 £59.99 per year
This was perfect for anyone not already signed up to Prime as it was the cheapest price we'd seen since a few weeks after Prime Day the year before- so we were glad Amazon decided to run the promotion before Prime Day this time. Don't forget, you need to be a Prime member to buy any of the Amazon Prime Day deals. A 30-day free trial was (and still is) available as an alternative option too.

Amazon Echo Dot: £49.99 £22 at Amazon
The Echo Dot gets regular discounts throughout the year, more so than any other Amazon device. £29.99 is the most regular offer (so never pay more than this!), but Amazon dropped it to £24.99 the week before Prime Day, then knocked a further £3 off the price during the official 48-hour event, arguably due to rival UK retailers also knocking the price down to £25. £22 was the cheapest price Amazon has ever sold the Echo Dot for.

Fire TV Stick with Alexa Voice Remote: £39.99 £19.99 at Amazon
As you can imagine at this price, this Fire Stick sold by the truck load (more like a fleet of truck loads actually). This streaming stick adds a bunch of streaming apps to your smart TV, most notably Amazon Prime Video and comes with an Alexa-voice remote too. Outrageous value.

Kindle Paperwhite | £119.99 £79.99 at Amazon
A fantastic price that only seems to come around on the Paperwhite for Prime Day. You might be looking at an extra tenner on black Friday. That doesn't mean you should hold off though as this is an excellent ereader and well worth the extra money. We see it drop under the £119 RRP quite often, so we'd at least hold on for a sub-£100 offer the rest of the year too.

Amazon Echo Show 5: £79.99 £49.99 at Amazon
Another Amazon device released very close to Prime Day and we suspected this would get a better deal than the launch price and £20 was a fantastic drop. This small screen-enabled smart speaker is significantly cheaper than the even smaller Echo Spot too, so even at RRP we thought it was a better deal.

Amazon Fire 7: £49.99 £29.99 at Amazon
Ok, at £30, you know you're not getting an iPad or even Samsung level of quality. But £30 for a tablet for basic web browsing and media playback was seriously tempting. The larger versions with a HD screen were also heavily discounted too, but this all-time low price really caught our eye. Apple charges more than that for official iPad cases.

Hisense 50-Inch 4K UHD HDR Smart TV: £449.99 £294 at Amazon
Lightning deals like this were fantastic value if you could catch them in time. A 50-inch 4K TV for under £300 and Hisense make decent ones on a budget too, so this is far better quality than some no-name tat you'd see for this price in the mad middle aisles of Lidl.

iPad Air £479 £459 at Amazon
The newest iPad Air is packed with technical grunt, so much so it's much closer to the spec of an iPad Pro than the smaller models but with a pricetag that wouldn't make you dizzy when you saw it smash onto your bank statement at the end of the month. This was a decent discount for a newish slate, but we're hoping for something more substantial around Black Friday.

PS4 Slim | 3 games | £219.99 at Amazon
Prime Day and gaming bundles have been disappointing for a few years now in all honesty, so our expectations were low and we were not particularly impressed with this sale either. Console prices have been stuck in a rut in the UK for a few years now with single-game bundles hovering between £220-£250 throughout the year. Yes, this one came with three games, but older ones worth about a tenner each.

Huawei Matebook D 15.6-inch Intel Core i3 8GB RAM £659.99 £399.99 at Amazon
Laptops had a great Prime Day once again. Everything from dirt cheap Chromebooks, mid-range gaming-ready laptops like this and super powerful ultrabooks like the XPS 13 were all on offer. It wasn't just Amazon either, Dell had a massive 'Black Friday in July' event at the same time.

Apple iPhone XR (64GB): £749 £639 at Amazon
For years, Prime Day mobile phone deals have been limited to budget handsets. Not in 2019 though, we saw a selection of Apple and Samsung's finest get excellent deals on SIM-free handsets.

Fitbit Versa – Black: £162.89 £139 at Amazon
Fitbit and Prime Day have had a romance going on for a while now and this time was no different. The Fitbit Versa lead the way, although it had strong competition from its other models along with rival brands like Garmin and TicWatch.

Beats Solo3 wireless headphones: £209.95 £142.99 at Amazon
Wireless headphones are big business nowadays and Beats has needed to up its game for a while as the competition in the market is heating up and you can often get better for less than the full-priced Beats headphones. A £70 discount on one of its best models with a massive 40-hour battery life, Siri voice control and comfort-cushioned earpieces made it one of the best audio deals of the day though.

Anker Wireless Earbuds £54.99 £37.99 at Amazon
While it was great to see top of the line in-ear wireless headphones get big discounts on Prime Day, we were super pleased to see budget buyers catered for too with these Anker Soundcore Liberty Neo wireless earbuds on Amazon Prime Day.

Philips Hue Bayonet Starter Kit: £118 £69.99 at Amazon
Oh Philips Hue. Oh so desirable and pretty, but generally oh so ridiculously priced for most of the year. Prime Day and Christmas shopping times seem to be solid shouts for better deals though and well worth waiting for when prices stay glued to their RRPs at other times.

Eufy BoostIQ RoboVac 30C: £289.99 £178.99 at Amazon
Robot vacuum cleaners are increasingly popular and they're not all priced around £500 any more. We saw a few brands, including the highly-respected iRobot Roomba series, get big discounts, but this Eufy model really caught our eye for well under £200. Can't afford a Roomba? A Eufy is well worth a look instead.

Instant Pot Duo V2 7-in-1 Electric Pressure Cooker: £169.99 £69.99 at Amazon
Instant Pots are huge over in the States, but it hasn't released as many models over here yet. So we were super surprised to see this massive reduction.

Bosch PSB 1800 LI-2 Cordless Combi Drill: £104.99 £49.99
Bosch always seems to have something special saved for Prime Day and this year's sale was no different as this cordless drills certainly appealed to our tech sensibilities. What do you mean we don't need it?!

23andMe DNA test kit: £149 £72.79 at Amazon
One of the biggest names in DNA testing kits had a half-price deal on for Amazon Prime Day. We'd never seen a price this low on the popular service that includes over 125 reports on health, wellness, ancestry and more.

Save up to 40% on various whiskies at Amazon
Booze is often an overlooked part of the Prime Day deals, but not for us! Prime Day is a great opportunity to stock up the ol' liqueur cabinet to wash it down with a bit of brown. there were big discounts on labels like Haig Club, Johnny Walker, Laphroaig, Jack Daniel's, Southern Comfort and more. Gin and vodka got involved too.

Google Home Mini £49 £24 at Currys
If you fancied going rogue and joining team Google's smart speaker party instead of team Alexa, Prime Day was a fantastic time to do so. Google always aggressively price-matches against the similar Echo speakers. You wouldn't find these deals at Amazon though, but other electronics stores like John Lewis, Currys, AO and Argos stepped up this time.

What did Amazon's rivals do on Prime Day?

Currys kicked of its 'Black Tag' event before Prime Day and it was still going for a few days afterwards too. Out of all the other stores, we'd probably say Currys gave Amazon the biggest fight for TVs, laptops and gadgets. Currys' wide selection of home white goods beat out Amazon too, although Amazon has never really focused on those as much.

John Lewis was very popular for Google Home products (not sold on Amazon) and while it was generally price-matching rivals rather than coming up with its own deals, we were happy to send you its way due to most items coming with a free minimum two-year warranty at no extra cost. Having to pay for delivery on items under £50 was a bit off-putting though on cheaper items and shows a key area where John Lewis are lagging behind the times a little on the UK online retailscape.

So much shopping is done on mobile now either via a browser, or by using a retailer's own app. According to AppsFlyer (as reported by PerformanceIn), the top 100 retail apps took a bit of a beating during Prime Day, not only were new installs down, 53% of them had a decrease of in-app purchases. And seeing as Amazon's app got through the sale without freezing all the time like it did last year, it's not great news for rival apps.

Overall, more people shopped via mobile at Amazon than ever before on Prime Day. Gone are the days when people tended to browse more on mobile, then fire up the laptop when they got home to actually finish the transaction. And to be fair, on Prime Day, you can't really afford to wait that long due to the risk of deals selling out.

Amazon Prime

(Image credit: Shutterstock)

Did Amazon get many new Prime members on the day?

It certainly did. According to Hitwise an additional 80 thousand new Prime customers signed up to Prime each day during the sale, that's a 147% increase year on year.

What we don't know though is what type of membership they signed up for. If they'd never been a Prime Member before they could have signed up for a 30-day free trial, or maybe they dived into a full year via the temporary £59 offer, saving £20 on the regular annual fee.

Amazon will be hoping those free trial signups don't cancel though once the 30 days are up. And with the Prime Video streaming service, free delivery, exclusive discounts free ebooks and many other perks available for members, there's certainly plenty of reason to stick with it.

Did anything go wrong on Prime Day 2019?

Actually, yes. The UK start at midnight was a complete flop. Amazon's site didn't crash or anything like that, but the deal prices that were supposed to go live as soon as the sale started simply didn't. 

So despite us, and the rest of the informed media, prepping a huge amount of content to launch around midnight to tell you about the best deals of the sale, we were left scratching our heads as all the old prices were still showing.

It took until around 4am for the proper prices to come through, which was a massive disappointment to any keen shoppers who wanted to dive into the sale before heading to bed. It was a seriously poor start from Amazon and we're still shaking our heads in disappointment. You have to hope it'll up its game for Black Friday.

If you decided to wait until the morning to check out the Prime Day deals then thing's were running much more smoothly. We didn't experience any other technical problems on Amazon's site or with the mobile app for the rest of the sale either.

(Image credit: Shutterstock)

What does all this mean for Black Friday?

Black Friday is certainly a busier day. While more and more retailers than ever before decided to take the fight to Amazon for Prime Day 2019 by having deals of their own, many did not. Come Black Friday though, the peak shopping event before Christmas, there will be many more stores getting involved as it's certainly not seen as 'just an Amazon' event here in the UK.

We expect prices to possibly drop even lower around Black Friday, especially on items that will be a little bit older by then like TVs, consoles, headphones and any other bits of tech that make their way onto Christmas wishlists. The main exception being Amazon's own devices as we expect some of those prices won't be back until next year so Amazon can have something in it's pocket for Prime Day 2020.

These Amazon products will still get great deals on Black Friday for sure, but they might just be a few quid more than they were on Prime Day. But the overall savings wouldn't quite be enough for it to be worthwhile waiting until summer next year if you really wanted a new Kindle or Alexa device before Christmas.

What is Amazon Prime Day

Amazon Prime Day is a summer sales event on Amazon websites around the world where members of Amazon Prime get exclusive discounts on a huge range of items. It's not just Amazon-branded items either (although they're amongst the best deals for sure), lots of other manufacturers and third-party merchants save their best deals for Prime Day too, knowing millions of extra shoppers will be hitting the online store.

Why does Amazon have Prime Day? Sure, it's a neat "thank you" for all its paying members. A thank you that involves giving Amazon more money. It's a smart model to be honest. You need to either sign up for a free trial or be an existing member of Amazon Prime and people that keep the service pay Amazon a monthly or annual fee giving Amazon a regular income source from them.

And it's no co-incidence the best deals are found on Amazon's items. Buy a Kindle and you're going to keep buying ebooks from Amazon. Buy a Fire TV Stick you're going to watch Prime Video (a great perk of membership) and maybe pay for the odd rental. Buy an Echo smart speaker and you're into the Alexa family and helping Amazon fight off competition from Google's rival Home devices.

When is Amazon Prime Day 2020?

Wow, you're keen! Amazon Prime Day 2020 is still a long way off being confirmed, but it's a safe bet it'll be another July event. Most probably July 13th and 14th given patterns of past years.

Prime Day gets bigger every year. Recent years have seen it go from 30, 36 and then straight to 48 hours for two full days of deals in 2019. That seems like a sensible figure to stick at (please, Amazon, we need to sleep). So yes, we'll see you here next time for the inevitable Amazon Prime Week 2020 next July.