Amazon’s Third Annual Prime Day Extravaganza Kicks Off July 11th

Prime Day

Amazon is getting ready to host its third annual Prime Day, which will feature hundreds of thousands of deals for Prime members spread out over 30 hours. It is sort of like a Black Friday or Cyber Monday event, only it is exclusive to members of Amazon's Prime program with a barrage of deals being adding as often as every five minutes. And this time around, Amazon is inviting shoppers from China, India, and Mexico to participate, making this somewhat of a global event with 13 countries in all taking part.

"Our members love Prime Day and we have been thrilled by the response over the last two years. It is inspiring us to make it even better this year for Prime members," said Greg Greeley, Vice President, Amazon Prime. "Every part of our business is working to deliver more deals for a record number of shoppers. This year’s Prime Day is too big for 24 hours—so we’re giving Prime members 30 hours to shop!"

Another twist is that nearly 40 percent of the Lightning Deals during this year's Prime Day event will come from small businesses and entrepreneurs. Amazon made this decision after seeing orders placed with small businesses and entrepreneurs triple year-over-year on Prime Day, both in the U.S. and around the world.

"Prime Day provides young brands like ours the opportunity to reach new customers and gain greater exposure through deals and increased traffic," said Caron Proschan, Simply Gum. "We are really excited to offer customers our best deals of the year and expect to see a huge sales lift that will help us prepare for the upcoming holiday season."

By expanding the availability of deals from small businesses and entrepreneurs, there is the potential for more exciting bargains than we have seen in the past two Prime Day events. Online shoppers were especially critical of the deals featured during the inaugural Prime Day in 2015, as many felt the deals and level of inventory did not live up to the hype. Even so, it turned out to be a huge success for Amazon, as was its second annual Prime Day, which set a record for single-day sales.

This time around Amazon is promising more Alexa-exclusive deals and "amazing TV deals," along with deals being organized by more than 20 of the most-shopped-for themes. And while July 11 is officially labeled as this year's Prime Day, the deals will start rolling in starting July 10 at 6PM PT / 9PM ET. To participate, you need to have signed up to be a Prime member on or before July 11.