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6 Detailed Steps of How to Support Small Businesses During Amazon Prime Day (2020) and All Year Long

Americans love to support small businesses. Americans love Amazon Prime Day. The combination of both helps to support our small businesses but also enjoy the benefits that your prime membership offers.

We enjoy the products and services they offer. These include excursions on vacations, the mom and pop store you go into on the way to work, and your favorite restaurant where everyone does know your name.

Small businesses in the US

There are 30.2 million small businesses in the United States. A small business is defined as a business with less than 500 employees.

Unfortunately, due to the COVID-19 pandemic, small businesses have suffered greatly. An article highlighted at the Stanford Institute for Economic Policy Research found the following.

The number of active business owners in the United States is down by 2.2 million or 15 percent from February 2020, but up 7 percent since the low in April. The continued losses in May and partial rebound from April were felt across nearly all industries and were not sensitive to using alternative restrictions on hours worked and measures. African-American business owners continue to be the hardest hit by COVID-19 experiencing a drop of 26 percent in business activity from pre-COVID-19 levels. Latinx business owners fell by 19 percent, and Asian business owners dropped by 21 percent. Immigrant business owners experienced substantial losses of 25 percent

With these statistics, it is imperative that we continue to supp

Amazon Prime Day in 2020 was moved from July to October 13 and 14 due to the COVID-19 pandemic. Amazon is giving an awesome incentive to support small businesses during Prime Day.

This article highlights the best ways to make the most of your Amazon Prime membership during Prime Day and all year long. This article is focused on supporting small businesses on Amazon.

What is Amazon Prime?

Amazon Prime is an annual membership that you can join with a subscription. Members receive benefits which include FREE fast shipping for eligible purchases, streaming of movies, TV shows and music, exclusive shopping deals and selection, unlimited reading, and more.

You can sign up for a 30-day free trial. If you plan on cancelling, set yourself a reminder on your calendar to cancel your membership before it gets automatically charged for the subscription. If you choose to be charged on a monthly basis, your membership charge will be $12.99. If you choose to be charged on an annual basis, you will be charged $119.

What is Amazon Prime Day?

Prime Day is a shopping holiday for Amazon’s 150 million Prime subscribers. The $13 per month or $120 per year Prime membership is required to claim Prime Day deals, though new subscribers can get a free 30-day trial.

Why did it get moved?

During the pandemic, Amazon had prioritized essential products such as toilet paper, paper towels, masks, cleaning supplies, and quarantine essentials.

Because of this, many sellers were not able to send their products to Amazon for shipping. In addition, USPS, UPS, FedEx, and Amazon’s own drivers were overwhelmed by the increased volume of online sales making it hard to guarantee delivery.

While we are still struggling with the coronavirus, there has been a dramatic increase in on time delivery. Therefore, Amazon Prime Day in July was postponed.

Why is it usually in July?

July is typically a slow month for retailers, brick and mortar and online. Funds are focused on vacations as July is the busiest travel season of the year, despite what you may think about Thanksgiving.

Because of these slow sales, Amazon started Prime Day to boost sale for one of the slowest retail months of the year. This year, Prime Day is October 13th and 14th.

Next, the steps to get started with prime and how to support small business owners (or sellers, which is what Amazon calls them) is described.

Step 1. Sign up to be an Amazon Prime Member

If you are not already a member, start your 30-day free trial. Already a prime member? Great, you are a good to go. Double-check that your membership is active.

Step 2. Until October 12, 2020 – Earn $10 for shopping small business

For the first time ever, Prime Members who order $10 or more from select small business on Amazon between now and Prime Day will receive $10 of credit that can be used to purchase anything (from large or small businesses) during Prime Day.

Amazon has more than 2.5 million sellers currently actively selling on the marketplace. There are roughly 25,000 sellers on Amazon with more than $1 million in sales, and 200,000 sellers with more than $100,000 in sales. 

  • Customers can shop tens of thousands of eligible products from a variety of categories such as home & kitchen, grocery, beauty & grooming, pet supplies, toys & games, electronics, jewelry, books, and more. Customers can find qualifying products at Amazon.com/supportsmall.
  • The $10 credit is valid for the duration of Prime Day – 12:00am (PT), October 13, 2020, to 11:59pm (PT), October 14, 2020. Prime Day Deals start October 13. The credit won’t be applied to purchases on Amazon.com prior to 12:00am (PT), October 13. See all deals at Amazon.com/primeday.
  • Small businesses eligible for this promotion are based in the country in which the promotion is taking place, and are registered with Brand Registry or participate in the Handmade program. The specific products featured in the promotion are owned and sold directly by US brand owners and artisans that are small businesses.
  • You can check to see if you’ve qualified for the credit at amazon.com/primedaycreditcheck.

Here are some items I’ve purchased from small businesses that you would enjoy that qualify for the $10 reward.

Step 3. Look for products that say “Sold by XXX.”

Sellers that are on Amazon have two ways to get their products to you. One is the send their inventory to a warehouse owned by Amazon and then Amazon delivers it to you. These are designated as “Ships from Amazon and Sold by XX”

Ships from Amazon and Sold by a small business

The other way is that sellers will keep their inventory in their location, store, warehouse, or another fulfillment center, and will ship it to you. These are shown as “Ships from XX” and Sold by “XX”

Items that are designed as “Ships from and sold by Amazon.com” are those products that Amazon is the seller. There is nothing wrong with buyer directly from Amazon, they often get the best deals, consider looking for other sellers as listed above.

If there are multiple sellers, including Amazon, if you look to the right hand side of the screen, it will say “Other sellers.” The other sellers are many times those small business you can support.

Step 4. Review the seller and the product.

Reviews are important to sellers as we all know we look for items that have a lot of reviews. As a buyer and seller on Amazon, I know how important it is to provide good products.

Once you make a purchase, you will receive an email from Amazon asking you to review the product. You may also get an email from the seller requesting to submit a review of their product.

Take the time to help this small business owner by providing a product and seller review. You can also go to orders page (Under the Returns and Orders tab) and there you can can leave a review for both the product and the seller

Extra tip: Be kind when doing reviews, this applies at any time. Many sellers depend on positive reviews to sell their product. While I would never advocate for giving a positive reviews to spare anyone’s feelings, consider reaching out to the seller before leaving a bad review. Oftentimes, sellers will bend over backwards to help make your experience great.

Step 5. Look for early reviewer emails

Early reviewer is a program offered by Amazon for new products that are being sold on Amazon. By being one of the first 6 reviewers, you can earn a small reward by Amazon to use on any future purchase. While given by Amazon, understand that the reward is paid for by the seller.

Step 6. Don’t ignore the package insert, it’s a gold mine

We get the Amazon package and we see a little card inside. We toss it into the trash. Have you looked at it yet?

Amazon’s Terms of Service (TOS) does not allow sellers to poach members from their platform. Some sellers do sneak in a little extra something. I have found free items, coupons, and others.

Other sellers will list the name of their company and the name of their website. Take the time to go to those websites. They might have deals, savings, and pricing cheaper than they sell it on Amazon.

In addition, buying directly from the seller helps to eliminate fees that they incur when selling on other platforms, such as Amazon, eBay, Etsy, Poshmark. On addition, Amazon limits certain items to be sold on their platform and thus you may find unique items on a seller’s website.

Other tips to make the most of your prime membership

Sign up for Amazon Smile to support your favorite charity

Amazon Smile is a fantastic program for those who want a consistent but simple way to support their favorite charity.

By going to smile.amazon.com instead of amazon.com, Amazon will give to the charity of your choice a percentage of eligible sales.

Amazon Smile Donation
Example of an Amazon Smile Donation

Learn more and enroll today.

While you are at it, consider looking for your favorite charities wish list. Oftentimes, the charities website will have a list of items you can directly buy off Amazon and send to them. This a great way to support your charity by providing them with the supplies they need while helping the community.

Take advantage of later arrivals with Amazon’s incentives

When you check-out, you will get an option for delivery dates. With your prime membership, anything that is designated “Prime” will receive top priority and offer free shipping. Don’t ignore those smaller sellers that also offer free shipping as well.

Amazon often offers an incentive for you to accept a later delivery called “FREE No-rush shipping.” It includes a $1 reward to select digital services.

Choose FREE No-Rush Shipping and we’ll automatically apply a digital reward (applicable to select eBooks, digital music, videos, and apps) to your account once your order ships. The reward amount may vary based on the number of eligible items in your cart. Limit of one reward per purchase. You can use this reward by logging on to Amazon.com, or browsing your smart phone, tablet, e-reader, TV or streaming device. Find an eBook, Prime Video, Digital Music, or app from Amazon Appstore that you want to purchase and we’ll automatically apply the reward at checkout. Offer redemption requires customers to be in the U.S.

This incentive is great as the weather cools down and the movie theaters are closing down. Get your favorite movie immediately, without leaving the comfort of your home with this extra discount.

Conclusion

With these 6 steps you can continue to support small businesses during and after Prime Day, 2020. Your support for small businesses is always appreciated and can attest “We wouldn’t be here without your support.”

Happy Shopping and Happy Prime Day!!

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