Some of the best deals on Amazon Prime Day may be found on sites that have nothing to do with the e-commerce giant and don't require shoppers to wait for the shopping holiday's "official" start.
Walmart (WMT), the largest retailer, is currently advertising deeper discounts on some TVs than it offered on Black Friday, according to Money magazine. Department store operator Macy's (M) is touting its "Black Friday in July" through July 15 on its website. Target (TGT) is offering a 25 percent discount on home items and is slashing prices on some toys by as much as 50 percent. Shoppers at Kohl's (KSS) can save as much as 70 percent during a "clearance sale."
More offers are expected before Prime Day's official launch on July 16, its third anniversary. Analysts estimate the shopping holiday generated more than $1 billion in sales for Amazon (AMZN) in 2017, roughly three times what it earns on a typical day. No wonder the number of unique retailers issuing Prime Day deals on RetailMeNot.com increased 340 percent, from 27 in 2016 to 119 in 2017.
"We expect that number to increase this year," said Michelle Skupin, a RetailMeNot spokeswoman. "Prime Day is no longer just an Amazon.com shopping holiday. It's much bigger than that."
Newegg, an e-commerce company that focuses on tech, has announced plans for its annual four-day "FantasTech sale" starting on July 16. Google (GOOG) is offering deals on its Google Home voice-activated speaker. More deals are expected to follow.
"We may see deals for flowers, mattresses and other non-consumer electronics and food-related products," said Peter Greene of InfoScout in a statement.
Officials from Walmart, Macy's, Target and Best Buy (BBY) didn't respond to requests for comment for this story. A Kohl's spokeswoman declined to comment on the retailer's Prime Day plans.
Wall Street will pay close attention to the performance of Prime Day because it may foreshadow how retailers will fare during back-to-school season and the December holidays, when the industry earns most of its profits.
Not to be outdone, Amazon has unveiled some deals of its own ahead of Prime Day, including awarding Prime Members $10 to spend on Amazon for every $10 they spend between July 11 and July 17 at its Whole Foods markets. Prime Day 2017 was the biggest shopping day in Amazon's history, surpassing Cyber Monday and Black Friday.
Earlier this year, Amazon disclosed thatmembers worldwide, who receive free two-day shipping along with access to its video content for a yearly fee of $119. eMarketer pegs the number of U.S. Prime households at more than 58 million this year and expects that number to hit 68 million in 2020. Prime Members also spend more on average than customers who don't subscribe to the service.
"Amazon will do $3.5 billion on Prime Day, a dramatic increase over last year, on a 'nothing' retail day in July," said retail consultant Jan Rogers Kniffen in an email. "Everyone else is merely playing defense."