Amazon Prime Day is back for its second year, and it kind of sucks, again. The one-day shopping extravaganza was a roaring success for the retailer last year, which recorded bigger sales figures than Black Friday even though customers complained that the stuff on sale was a bunch of junk. This year is no different: customers are venting their frustrations at bad deals (a discount on Tupperware? Wow!), but Amazon’s checkout system is still struggling under the pressure to sell people all their stuff.
The deals are only available for one day to Amazon Prime customers, who pay a $99 annual subscription fee (although Amazon stresses you can cancel anytime). For that rate, you’d think the deals would be pretty hefty, but beyond a select few top deals like 48 percent off a Samsung 55-inch 4K TV or $30 off the latest Doom video game, there’s not a whole lot to write home about.
As with most instances of public mild annoyance, people hopped on Twitter to deliver biting critiques of the company.
It’s hard to get too excited about deals on products that were fairly cheap to start with, but Prime Day could be a big ecosystem boost for Amazon. The store dropped Apple and Google streaming devices late last year, as they were incompatible with the Prime streaming service bundled in with Prime subscriptions. Yes, the same Prime subscription that you need to take part in Prime Day. It’s easy to see how, for Amazon, it may not be so much about the size of the deals, but about drawing attention to the company’s current offerings and building up (or retaining) Prime subscriptions.
Beyond half-hearted deals aimed at building a userbase, it seems Amazon may not have foreseen some of the site issues cropping up today. Amazon’s official Twitter account seemed to suggest the company had not prepared as much as it could for the onslaught of thirsty shoppers.
Sorry about your cart Ms. Mach, but Amazon is on the case. Wait, no, a bunch of other people are struggling too.
This guy even got up early!
There’s always next year.