Last week, Amazon held its annual Prime Day event.

The shopping holiday, which Amazon launched in 2015 to celebrate its 20th anniversary, is positioned as a sort of Black Friday in July and thanks to Amazon's online retail dominance, has become one of the biggest shopping days of the year.

Prime Day 2017 proved to be the biggest yet. Just how big? Here are the stats and facts you should know about Amazon's self-proclaimed "epic day of deals."

Sales grew 60%

Year-over-year, Amazon says its Prime Day sales grew a whopping 60%. While Amazon didn't reveal absolute revenue figures, considering that Prime Day 2016 was estimated to have generated somewhere between $500m and $600m in revenue, there is no doubt that it raked in the cash last week and it's estimated that the retail giant surpassed the $1bn sales mark with Prime Day this year.

Tens of millions of Prime members made a purchase

By some estimates, approximately 70% of U.S. households have a Prime membership and according to Amazon, "tens of millions" of Prime members put them to use on Prime Day, a 50% year-over-year increase.

Amazon signed up more Prime members than ever on a single day

What's more, Amazon revealed that the ranks of Prime members increased the most ever in a single day as consumers without Prime memberships itching to take advantage of Prime Day deals took the plunge and signed up for the service, which costs $99/year or $10.99/month.

The Echo Dot was Prime Day's biggest seller

The future of voice assistants is looking very bright and it became even brighter last week as Amazon's Echo Dot speaker captured the distinction of being the best-selling product on Prime Day.

The voice assistant, which normally costs $49.99, was discounted by 30%, bringing its price down to $34.99. Amazon also heavily discounted the larger and more feature-rich Echo voice assistant speaker to $89.99 down from $179.99. All told, according to one TechCrunch source, Amazon was selling thousands of Echo devices per minute at one point during Prime Day and doubled and tripled the total number of Echo devices it sold in the U.S. and globally, respectively, compared to Prime Day last year.

The frenetic pace of Echo sales last week only bolsters the argument that Amazon is set to win the voice-controlled speaker market if it hasn't already.

Some sellers saw their sales leap over 1,000%

Companies offering Prime Day discounts might have sacrificed margins to be a part of Amazon's big shopping holiday, but they were rewarded with surging sales.

One first-time Prime Day participant, natural chewing gum upstart Simply Gum, offered customers 20% off its gums and saw its Amazon sales rocket by 1,371%. According to Simply Gum founder Caron Proschan, "Prime Day has really proven to be one of the most important days of the year for our business, not only in terms of sales lift, but also in terms of generating brand awareness and exposure."

Second-time Prime Day participant kitchen products company Willow & Everett, realized Prime Day sales 1,500% higher than its daily average sales volume on Amazon, a sizable increase from 2016, which delivered Prime Day sales of 1,000%, or ten times, its daily average sales volume.

Other retailers cashed in

While Amazon started Prime Day, the 'Black Friday in July' concept has caught on and other retailers, not wanting to be left behind, have launched their own July sales to coincide with Prime Day.

According to Bloomberg, one of Amazon's biggest competitors, eBay, "had its two best sales days ever for July during Amazon's event this week, according to a person familiar with the matter."

Interestingly, according to SimilarWeb, while traffic to Amazon increased 5% year-over-year on Prime Day, the percentage of Amazon visitors who completed a purchase during Prime Day dropped from 14.5% to 11.4%, suggesting that more consumers are aware of the fact that other retailers are offering discounts of their own during Prime Day.

Amazon was by and large the price leader, but not all the time

In its analysis of Prime Days sales, Price comparison shopping service Priceblink found that 40% of Prime Day deals were exclusive to Amazon. Another 40% were not exclusive to Amazon but had Amazon offering the lowest price by an average of 18%.

The remaining 20% of deals were offered by other retailers who had better prices than Amazon.

Black Friday is still the day for "steals"

Despite the growing competition from other retailers, with a few exceptions, Black Friday in July isn't quite the Black Friday (or Cyber Monday). At least not yet. As USA Today's Jefferson Graham put it, while there were many deals to be had, there were "few steals," something that some consumers took note of.

While Prime Day still reached new heights in 2017, it's clear that consumers are getting savvier and it will be interesting to see if the Prime Day discounting gets more aggressive in the coming years as they come to demand that July's Black Friday delivers on the name.

Patricio Robles

Published 18 July, 2017 by Patricio Robles

Patricio Robles is a tech reporter at Econsultancy. Follow him on Twitter.

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