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What are Amazon lightning deals and how do you create them?

10/12/2020 • Reading time: ca. 5 min • by Trutz Fries

Introduction to the Amazon lightning deals

A lightning deal is a paid promotion in which vendors and sellers offer a promotional discount on a certain number of a particular item for a limited period of 4 to 12 hours. Amazon lightning deals are also called amazon deals or offers of the day.


All lightning deals can be found in the 'Todays's Deals' section on the Amazon website.

Figure 1: Click on "Todays's Deals" to find all lightning deals.

All lightning deals can be found in the "Todays's Deals" section on the Amazon website.

Deals site on Amazon3-a
Figure 2: Deals site on Amazon

Lightning deals are available to both sellers and vendors. A lightning deal is only online until either the offer period has expired or until the number of available offer discounts for this lightning deal has been completely assigned.

Example for a lightning deal
Figure 3: Example for a lightning deal

Placing a lightning deal increases the visibility of the advertised product due to the following points:

  • the placement of the product on the deals site
  • the identification of the product by the lightning deal label

When creating a lightning deal, you can only select the period of time in which the lightning deal should be visible, not the day of the week or time of day; these are determined by Amazon. Amazon offers you a choice of weekly periods, always starting on Monday. Depending on the time of day and day of the week, your offer may receive less attention than expected.

An amazon deal can only be ordered once per customer and product.

Create an Amazon lightning deal

Requirements for an Amazon lightning deal

To create a lightning deal, the following conditions must be met:

  • The seller is instructed to apply at Amazon. Not every product is approved by Amazon for such an offer (e.g. alcohol).
  • The minimum requirement is a rating of at least 3.0 and that the product can be shipped with Amazon Prime.
  • The price of the product is reduced by at least 15%, undercutting the lowest selling price of the last 30 days by at least 5%.
  • The amazon deal must be a new product. Used products are excluded from this promotion.
  • Campaigns for the same product must not overlap.

On Prime Day, additional or extended conditions for a lightning deal apply:

  • The price of the product will be reduced by at least 20%, thus undercutting the lowest selling price of the last 30 days by at least 10% (including lightning deals).
  • The offer must be the lowest selling price since the beginning of the year (including previous deal prices).
  • The minimum requirement is a rating of at least 3.5 and that the product can be shipped with Amazon Prime.
  • The article presentation must comply with the Amazon guidelines for product presentations (style guides).

However, the following applies to all lightning deals: If there are several variants of a product, a minimum number of the available variants is included in the offer to give the buyer the greatest possible choice. Besides a variant variety of the product can prove as advantageous for its permission.

But even if you meet all the requirements, Amazon may not allow the deal. Amazon wants to ensure that the platform itself can generate a certain minimum turnover. Ultimately, Amazon also wants to earn money from your offer. A common reason for rejection is that the quantity specified in the deal is no longer available. We therefore recommend that you check 36 hours before activating the lightning deal to see if the stock is sufficient. Likewise, strong price reductions can be a reason that the deal is no longer sufficiently qualified. Please check again that nothing has changed in your lightning deal.

Create an Amazon lightning deal

To create a lightning deal, click on deals in your Seller/Vendor Central under Advertising and then on Create a new deal in the top right corner. Then select a product for the lightning deal from your inventory.

Select product for the lightning deal
Figure 4: Determine product for the lightning deal

Then determine a week period suggested by Amazons in which your lightning deal should appear. However, you cannot determine an exact day of the week or time. Also take into account a certain amount of lead time. A lightning deal cannot go online immediately. Plan your regular lightning deals with a lead time of one month. Lightning deals on Prime Day usually have a longer lead time.

Select period for an Amazon deal
Figure 5: Selecting the period for an Amazon deal

In the next step you define your deal price or discount per unit and the minimum quantity for the lightning deal.

Set price for an Amazon deal
Figure 6: Set price for an Amazon deal

Finally, you will be taken to the overview page where you can check all the details once again. Submit your lightning deal afterwards. This will now be checked by Amazon.

Preview of the lightning deal
Figure 7: Preview of the lightning deal

The test status of your lightning deal shows you its current state:

  • Draft: Your Amazon deal is still in draft status and has to be submitted to Amazon for final review.
  • Audited: If the deal is checked manually, this status appears. Many deals are activated directly after the creation of Amazon and get the status "Upcoming" immediately.
  • Editing required: Your Amazon deal still needs to be adjusted in some places. Afterwards you can submit it again.
  • Declined: The lightning deal was rejected by Amazon.
  • Upcoming: Amazon has now automatically set a date and a time period when the lightning deal will be published. You have no influence on this. However, you can cancel the offer free of charge up to 25 hours before the scheduled start and submit it again. If you were not satisfied with the previous period, you may now receive a more suitable period for you.
  • Hidden: An already approved lightning deal was subsequently deactivated by Amazon. This can have different reasons. One of the most common reasons is that the product is no longer available in the required quantity. Even hidden offers must still be cancelled by you to avoid any costs.
  • ASIN grayed out: A product of your Amazon deal no longer meets the requirements of Amazon. You can exclude this product from the Amazon deal.
  • Active: The deal is currently active.
  • Finished: The deal has already run and is no longer active.
  • Cancelled: The deal has been cancelled by the seller.

Cost of an Amazon lightning deal

There are two fees for the execution of a lightning deal:

  • a basic marketing fee (regular 35€, at certain events 70€), which is charged for each lightning deal
  • a fee for each product purchased through the lightning deal The fee is displayed during the quote creation process when you select the schedule for the quote.

7-day Deals as an alternative to the Amazon lightning deal

Besides the lightning deal it is also possible to set up a 7-day Deal. To do so, select the "7-day Deals" button above before you select the desired product. All products that can be used for a 7-day Deal will then be displayed.

Setting up a 7-day Deal
Figure 8: Setting up a 7-day Deal

Conclusion

Lightning deals can certainly promote sales at the expense of the margin. Day and time are often decisive for success, but you have only limited influence on it. Not every product is suitable for a lightning deal. Check your products which can be used for such a discount campaign. Also make sure that you leave longer intervals between lightning deals of the same product (min. 4 weeks). Amazon often does email marketing in addition to the lightning deals. This means that the customers who have already visited the product or have it on their wish list have been intercepted by it. It then takes some time to gather new interested customers for the product.

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