Amazon Watch: Weekly recap
In addition to revealing details about Prime Day, Amazon made the headlines for several other stories. Here’s a rundown:
Prime Day comes at a price for Amazon’s third-party sellers. For the second year in a row, the online giant is hiking up its fees for sellers to run Prime Day Lightning Deals during its 36-hour Prime Day event.
Amazon to print its own toy story. Amazon is taking a page out of the now defunct Toys “R” Us play book, and will reportedly print a toy catalog for the upcoming holiday season that will be mailed and also be available in Whole Foods Market stores.
Plenty of speculation about when Amazon will…. As Amazon preps to close on its purchase of PillPack, the industry is abuzz with speculation about when it will begin selling prescription drugs.
‘Emerald City’ Amazon Go in the works. Despite plans to open Amazon Go locations in Chicago and San Francisco, Amazon plans to open a second cashier-less store in its hometown of Seattle this fall.
Study: Prime Day to give back-to-school spending a big boost. Retailers are jumping onboard Amazon’s upcoming Prime Day event to kick off their back-to-school shopping season.
Study: Most consumers welcome Amazon’s move into pharmacy. More than half of Americans approve of Amazon’s decision to enter the pharmacy market — most likely because they think it will in-crease competition and reduce prices, according to a research report from Global DataRetail.
Prime Day comes at a price for Amazon’s third-party sellers
Not everyone is getting a deal on Prime Day.
For the second year in a row, Amazon is hiking up its fees for sellers to run Prime Day Lightning Deals during its 36-hour Prime Day event, according to CNBC.
Last year, Amazon charged sellers $500 to run these exclusive deals. This year, the online giant has upped the price to $750 per Lightning Deal, the report revealed.
Lightning Deals, which are promotions that offer a limited quantity of merchandise for a short period of time, are offered year-round on the site. They typically cost a fraction of what a Prime Day deal does, according to CNBC.
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On Trend: Six retailers leveraging the children’s subscription box craze
Subscription boxes are all the rage across women’s apparel, beauty and pet supplies — and, more recently, children’s clothing.
Differentiating a brand in the subscription segment isn’t mere child’s play. Here are six retailers — two upstarts and four familiar names — that have found a way to stand out:
• BabyGap. The specialty retailer is building momentum in its subscription box offerings. It launched its first option, The BabyGap Outfit Box, last fall. Each box is filled with up to with six Baby Gap mix-and-match pieces, curated for children between newborn and 3T. Boxes cost $70. Gap expanded its offering last spring with its Bedtime Box, which features three sleep sets in sizes ranging between 6 months to 5T. The box is offered every three months.
• Old Navy. Building off of its BabyGap offering, Gap Inc. launched the Old Navy Superbox, a quarterly subscription that features apparel for kids ages 5 through 12. The boxes, which are filled with six mix-and-match items worth more than $100, cost $59.99 each.
• Target. The discounter is grabbing attention with its Cat & Jack Outfit Box, which followed its Baby Box. The box features between six and seven items from its popular children’s line, including bodysuits, leggings, rompers and an additional gift. The assortment is curated by Target’s designers, and any item can be returned online or in stores. Boxes are available for children between newborn and 24 months. Each box is $40, and comes out seasonally.
• Kidbox. The clothing-in-box company dresses boys and girls, from infant to size 14, drawing from some 100 brands. Kidbox is also prepping to debut its private label line, and will add at least one private label piece to each seasonal box, starting with this year’s back-to-school offering. Kidbox donates a new, tagged item from its previous season’s inventory to a child in need.
• Kidpik. Targeting girls aged 3-12, Kidpik delivers a personalized box containing six items tailored to an individual girl’s taste and preset spending range. Customers keep the items they like and return the rest for free. Customers that keep the entire box receive a 30% discount. The final cost ranges between $75-$100 per box, after discount. If a customer has any items to be returned, they can request items be donated to the Good Plus Foundation, a charity founded by Jessica Seinfeld that makes donations to families in need.
• Amazon. Instead of focusing on children’s apparel, the online retailer launched its Prime Book Box program, a subscription box of board books for children under 2 years old, or hardcover books for readers between 3 and 12 years old. Each delivery contains two hardcover books or four board books, depending on the child’s age. The program, which is invitation-only for Prime members in the United States, is $22.99 plus tax, and all boxes ship free. Books are sold for 35% off of merchandise list prices.
• FabKids. From athleisure retailer Fabletics, FabKids mimics its parent’s offerings with a mix of staples like leggings and tees and on-trend fashion items for boys and girls ages 2 to 14. The customer starts by taking a style quiz and then, each month, FabKids will send merchandise picks directly to her or his inbox. Customers select the pieces they want — or skip the month — giving them control over what’s in the box.