Omnitracs' Road Ahead blog

Prepare your fleet for Prime Day and other massive online sales events

Pierre Sarnow
Pierre Sarnow
Lead Data Scientist

Move over, spring! The summer season is kicking off with sweltering heat and hot, hot sales.

On June 21-22, 2021, Prime Day — Amazon’s much-anticipated and annual two-day event for exclusive Prime customers — takes place across the U.S. and many other countries around the globe, including Mexico, Japan, and Australia. Prime Day is a landmark shopping event touting enormous sales and discounts on tech, kitchen appliances, and much more. These discounts are so steep they compete with competitive Black Friday and Cyber Monday sales numbers.

Many retailers, including retail conglomerates, aim to compete by lining up their sales with Amazon’s. And last year, third-party sellers on Amazon surpassed $3.5 billion in sales. Prime Day is a global phenomenon. It kindles massive sales opportunities for businesses of all shapes and sizes, and it ignites competitive fervor amongst competitors. Your fleet should aim to prepare.

How Prime Day manages to be new and historical

In 2015, on Amazon’s 20th birthday, the first Prime Day was born. The event broke records, surpassing items purchased during Black Friday 2014. Not many events could compete and exceed Black Friday numbers in their first year. Prime Day is still relatively new and has already substantially impacted e-commerce and the global supply chain.

In contrast to the years before, Prime Day 2020 took place in October due to the COVID-19 pandemic and delayed recovery and preparation efforts. The top-selling categories from third-party sellers were bedding, wireless accessories, nutrition and wellness, arts and crafts, and healthcare. Sales records surpassed 2019 numbers by nearly 60%.

Learn from past Prime Days

I analyzed Omnitracs’ vast database to identify trends from previous Prime Day events. Last year, over-the-road customer activity increased by a whopping 20% above average the week before Prime Day. Over-the-road customers in the electronics sector, one of the biggest stars of the annual event, drove more miles during the three weeks before Prime Day 2020, with the highest increase the week before.


The event also impacted last-mile customers. Below, see stops for customers servicing electronics stores in 2018. Stops increased substantially the week before and several weeks after. These stores were preparing for Prime Day and then meeting demand from Prime Day sales.


Connect data to your fleet

While Amazon controls much of its end-to-end supply chain, 35% of Prime Day products are not sold directly via Amazon. Many B2B companies and third-party businesses play a pivotal role in the customer’s order journey.

Our data signifies an increase in preparation and activity before, during, and after Prime Day events. You can prepare your fleet for Prime Day 2021 and any major online shopping event with these checklist items:

1. See where your fleet fits: Are you transporting electronic supplies, or do you work in an industry that’s deeply impacted by Prime Day sales? See where you reside along the spectrum to understand your capacity needs and equip your teams for triumph.

2. Manage the workflow process for drivers: More stops equate to less time and ramped up efficiency demands. Utilize a data-backed workflow to give drivers task-by-task and stop-by-stop breakdowns they can easily click through and complete.

3. Easily add stops without obliterating driver schedules: Your entire operation can inflate in a moment on Prime Day, with your fleet going from having a typical day’s orders to three times as much. Utilize a trusted route algorithm to easily account for last-minute loads and stops with minimal disruptions to driver routes.

Happy Prime hauling! For more major transportation topics, check out our new podcast! The Road Ahead Podcast brings valuable insights from inside and outside the transportation industry to help you think outside of the box and consider innovations that could transform your fleet. Tune in!