Amazon.com ( AMZN ) is beginning its Black Friday sales earlier than ever before this year.
The deals begin today, Friday, Nov. 21, a week ahead of Black Friday.
The company announced that for eight days, it will have new deals every 10 minutes, on everything from electronics to clothing to toys. Besides these, Amazon will have six unique "Deals of the Day,"- three on Thanksgiving day and three more on Black Friday.
The Ever Sweetening Benefits for Prime Members
Amazon Prime members have another reason to celebrate as they will be notified of limited-time Lightning Deals 30 minutes before others. Lightning Deals will be available until the specified time runs out or all of the available items are sold.
Cyber Monday versus Black Friday
The concept of "Cyber Monday" (usually the Monday after Thanksgiving) is gradually fading as online retailers are introducing the deals well in advance of Black Friday instead of waiting until Cyber Monday to get the products sold.
Retailers like Walmart and Kmart are also introducing Black Friday deals earlier than before at both their brick and mortar stores and online. As a result, Amazon and other online retailers have to offer their deals earlier to stay in the competition.
Amazon Getting Ready for the Holiday Season
To make these sales happen smoothly, Amazon is hiring extra workers and deploying robots. The robots can help Amazon to easily cater to demand during the peak holiday season, when it has high customer traffic. The holiday season is crucial for Amazon as sales in November and December account for a major part of its annual revenues.
According to the Wall Street Journal, the company has hired 80,000 seasonal workers, a 14% increase from last year. According to Comscore, Amazon was the most-visited online retailer in the U.S. on Black Friday last year.
Amazon seeks to be the most customer-focused company and therefore has been striving to beef up its delivery system in order to provide better customer services. In relation to these efforts, Amazon has plans to develop a drone-based delivery service wherein it will deploy airborne robotic drones to deliver packages to consumers in 30 minutes. In July, Amazon had requested the Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) for permission to fly drones out of their test facility.
Charity while Shopping
Amazon customers can also shop Black Friday deals while donating to a charity of their choice. Amazon will give away a portion of the proceeds to their preferred charity if they start shopping at smile.amazon.com/blackfriday .
Amazon currently has a Zacks Rank #3 (Hold).
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