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Amazon Lightning Deals Guide

One good way to get product and brand exposure on one of the largest e-commerce sites is by taking advantage of Amazon lightning deals. As an Amazon FBA seller, you must have heard of this amazing way to boost your sales for new products and get more reviews plus increased word of mouth promotion.

In this article, IO Scout explore the important things you need to know about Amazon lightning deals.

What are Amazon Lightning Deals?

Lightning deals are very limited deals on some of Amazon's top sellers. It is a promotion offered for a short period of time in a limited quantity.

Amazon lightning deals are not like anything else on the site. It follows a strict rule and is time-sensitive. It's limited to one per customer until the item becomes out of stock or until the promotion period for the deal expires.

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How Amazon Lightning Deals Work?

When a lightning deal is available, you'll see the item featured in the deal, indicating the promotional discount amount and the final price, excluding tax. You'll also see a status bar showing the percentage of deals that have been claimed, a timer indicating how long you have to add the product to your cart and get the promotional discount, and an "Add to Cart" button is deals are still available.

You can find lightning deals throughout Amazon.com and on Today's deals page or Prime page. All deals are exclusive to Prime Members on Prime Day . Prime members also get access to many of the deals 30 minutes before non-members.

Since the deals are time-sensitive, shoppers are to complete their orders as soon as possible, so they don't lose any item in their cart. They have 15 minutes to complete the transaction, or they miss out on the deal.

How do You Create an Amazon Lightning Deal?

You need to do the following to create an Amazon Lightning deal.

1. Check for Eligibility

There are some requirements you need to meet to be eligible for these deals. You need a professional seller account, must receive at least five Seller Feedback Ratings each month, and must have a minimum of 3.5 stars rating overall.  

In addition to that, your products must meet certain requirements too.

  • Your products must have an Amazon sales history plus a rating of 3 stars, at least.
  • It must be Prime-eligible in all regions.
  • It must follow Amazon's pricing policies.
  • It must be unrestricted, inoffensive, and appropriate.
  • It must be in "New Condition."
  • It must have as many variations as possible.
  • It must comply with customer product reviews policies.
  • It must comply with deal frequency policies.

Once you've determined your eligibility, move on to the next step.

2. Log onto Amazon Seller Central and Navigate to the Deals Menu

This step comes after you have determined that your Amazon seller account and products are eligible for Amazon Lightning Deals. Once you log onto Amazon Seller Central, go to "Promotions" tab and click "Deals."

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3. Select "Create a New Deal"

After clicking on "Deals," the screen will display your previous promotions after loading, plus a "Create a new deal" button. Click on the button.

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4. Select an Eligible Product and Enter the Information for its Deal

The next step is to choose the product for the promotion and Lightning Deal as the type. Here's an example.

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5. Schedule Your Amazon Lightning Deal

After entering all the relevant information for your Amazon Lightning Deal, the next thing to do is to pick a date range for the promotion. However, Amazon does not allow sellers to pick the actual day and time that their Lightning deals will appear.

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6. Configure Your Lightning Deal

After setting the time period for your Amazon Lightning deal, the next thing is to enter the deal's pricing and how many units available for the deal.  

  • The maximum amount for which you intend to sell your item is the deal price. You are required to give a 15% discount at least.
  • Then, commit a number of units to the deal.
  • You can offer some or all of your product variations, if any.

7. Review 

Check to make sure that all of your Lightning Deal information is correct.

8. Submit

After reviewing, submit your Lightning Deal for approval. The approval process is usually instantaneous

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9. Receive Your Schedule

Amazon will notify you about your actual Lightning Deal the week before, and if you are lucky, your Lightning Deal will appear at a good time when shoppers are busy buying. There's actually no way to influence when your Lightning Deal appears.

Amazon Lightning Deals Tips

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Here are 10 Amazon Lightning Deals tips for shoppers.

1. Every deal has a time limit and a claim limit

When going into deals, expect them to go fast. The claim limit can vary from a few to hundreds of items. It's best to show up before a lightning deal starts so as to increase your chances of claiming the deal.

2. Lightning Deals have purchase limits

Shoppers can only purchase one unit of each of the lightning deal items.

3. Join the Waitlist if you miss a deal

If the claim limit for an item is reached, you can join the waiting list to see if you can still get the deal. If someone fails to checkout in after 15 minutes and so loses the item from his cart, you might get it.  

4. Lightning Deals run 24/7

Amazon lightning deals run 24hours a day, 7 days a week. There are several deals starting as often as every five minutes.

5. Filter out what you are looking for at the sidebar

Check the "upcoming" box to see what is coming up and set an alarm so you won't miss it.

6. Lightning Deals can change

Something might happen, and deals will change at the last minute. It could be that they run out of stock or anything else. Make sure you check the deal list, be in the right category, and find the deal you are interested in before time.

7. Click the "Proceed to Checkout" button to redeem a lightning deal

You won't get the lightning deal discount if you use the 1 Click to Checkout option. So use the "Proceed to Checkout" button instead.

8. Know Your Prices

Sometimes, there may not be so much discount on a lightning deal. To make sure that a lightning deal is as good as it seems, check out the item you want before it goes on the Lightning Deal to know the price.

9. Use a Computer to catch Lightning Deals

Unless you have the Amazon mobile app, lightning deals don't work on mobile devices. You may also have to contend with the delay if you are using the mobile app. It's best to use your computer.

10. You can't claim deals early

If you put an item in your cart before the scheduled time, hoping to get the price, you won't get it. To get the deal, you have to click on the lightning deal button.  

Amazon Prime Day Lightning Deals

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All lightning deals are exclusive to Prime members only on Amazon Prime Day. Prime members can take advantage of all the fantastic deals available across fashion, beauty, tech, home, and more. You'll find these deals on the Prime Day page.

Amazon Lightning Deals Today

To find all the awesome discount deals available, including the Lightning Deals, head over to Amazon's Today's Deals page.

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What if You Can't Profit From An Amazon Lightning Deal?

Before creating an Amazon Lightning Deal, it's best to determine if it is a profitable option for your Amazon FBA business. To do this, you have to perform a break-even analysis on your product this way.

1. Determine the gross profit per unit

Not sure how to determine your product's gross profit? Use this equation: Discounted sales price of your Amazon FBA product minus Amazon fees per unit minus landed cost per unit equals gross profit.

For instance, if your product sells for $25 on Amazon (discounted from its normal price) and your total Amazon fees are $9.05, and your product's landed cost is $5.50, which means your product earns $10.45 gross profit per unit sale.

2. Determine your Break-even unit numbers

Next, you'll have to determine how many units of your products you need to sell to pay for the Lightning Deal. To do this, divide the Lightning Deal fee amount by the average gross profit per unit.

Using the previous instance, if you are earning $10.45 per item after the discount and your Lightning Deal is $150, you need to sell 15 items at least to cover that fee.

3. Determine if you can reach a break-even number with your average daily sales

Check out data for the average percentage bump experienced with Lightning Deals, and use it to determine if you can possibly sell enough units to warrant the cost of the Lightning Deal fees.

You'll determine this by dividing your break-even unit number by the average percentage bump. If you have a result lower than the average unit per sales per day for the item, then you can profit from the Lightning deal. But the Lightning Deal is not worth it if the result is higher than the average unit sales per day for the item.

Other Considerations

There are some other things to think about when you want to perform a break-even analysis for a Lightning Deal:

  • The number of items you sell is inversely proportionate to the amount of gross profit per unit your discounted product earns. You'll need more sales to pay the cost of the Lightning Deal if your gross profit per unit for the product is lower, and if your gross profit per unit is higher, you only need fewer sales to pay that $150.
  • The percentage bump chart is an average. A number of factors can affect the performance of your product. For instance, a lousy timing for your Lightning Deal may affect the rate of the first-day bump in sales.  
  • Lighting Deal fees are not a fixed number. Amazon Lightning Deal fees can get to as high as $500per listing during the holidays and Prime Day. Though your sales will be higher also, the fee can still be a difficult amount to pay off.

Why Use Amazon Lightning Deals?

There are other reasons to schedule an Amazon Lightning Deal apart from increasing sales. Here are some of the other reasons why you need to use Amazon Lightning Deals.

1. Liquidating inventory

A Lighting Deal is a good opportunity for you if you need to unload a ton of inventory. Even if you don't profit from it, it is still a better way to remove your inventory than liquidating it through Amazon's liquidation program that may pay as low as $0.05 per unit.

However, the challenge you'll have is that Amazon rarely approves liquidation-ready or slow-moving products for Lightning deals, but you can still try.

2. Improve product visibility

Lightning Deals are promoted all over Amazon.com and are emailed to deal hunters who signed up for it. This increased visibility generates more brand awareness, listing clicks, and sales.

After a successful lightning deal, you won't only experience an increase in sales, you'll also observe an improvement in your Best Seller Ranking (BSR). Your product's visibility also increases as the best seller ranking improves. 

3. Cost benefits 

Another reason why you should consider creating a lightning deal is that it is a cost-effective way to advertise your products and increase sales, especially in peak periods like Amazon Prime Day and holidays.

4. New customers 

Since they are displayed to all Amazon visitors, Lightning Deals expose your product to new customers who may not have found it through the organic search results. 

5. Increased organic ranking

Lightning Deals can also increase your search result ranking as a result of increased clicks, sales, and customer reviews.

FAQ

How do I find Amazon Lightning Deals?

Finding Amazon Lightning Deals is a no-brainer, thanks to the Amazon customer-friendly website design, you simply have to go to Today's Deal page.

To find the page, go to the upper menu, and once you click on it, you'll find a menu on the left-hand side of the screen, which will give you the possibility to access the Lightning Deals under the Deal Type tab.

You'll find a timer displayed under each deal indicating how many units of the deal have been claimed already.

If you want to purchase the item, just add it to your cart and proceed to complete the purchase. Remember that you can only place an order for a particular Lightning Deal once. If you change your mind and remove the deal from your cart and then decide to add it again, you'll have to pay the undiscounted Amazon.com selling price for the product.

When all offers have been claimed, the deal is marked as Sold Out. You can still add the product to your cart, but you'll have to pay the full listing price

Are Amazon Lightning Deals worth it?

Well, only you can decide if Amazon Lightning Deal is worth it for your brand or not. While there are several reasons why you should try scheduling one, you need to plan and prepare adequately for it. To decide if it's worth it for you, consider these Amazon Lightning Deals cons.

Are Lightning Deals are expensive?

Lightning Deal fee varies depending on the time of the year when the deal is being run and the category the product is in, however, it typically costs $150 to run. Add this fee to the decreased Return on Investment (ROI) that you'll receive on sales since the item is being offered at a discounted price, and you can quickly realize that not all products are going to be a fantastic fit for Lightning Deals.

Inventory planning can be tricky 

While preparing for your upcoming Lightning Deal, you'll have to make sure that your product is properly stocked, and that may mean stocking far more than you are used to, which might lead to difficulties in logistics depending on the situation of your business.

On the other hand, there is no guarantee when it comes to Lightning Deals. If your product does not sell as much as you anticipated, you will be on the hook for all of that excess inventory.

Many sellers don't notice long-term benefits 

Some sellers have success stories about increased sales long after the Lightning Deal is over. However, many more sellers have a different story. For some, the short term boost in sales and rankings that comes from a Lightning Deal soon diminishes and returns to previous norms fairly quickly; some sellers may even regret running the promotion in the first place.

You do not have much control over your Lightning Deal

After submitting your Lightning Deal proposition to Amazon, you do not have any control over when your Lightning Deal will appear. It's possible that your 6-hour Lightning Deal window could be scheduled at a time that doesn't match your target demographics or your product, and there are no refunds based on performance.

You can cancel your Lightning Deal for a refund up to 24 hours before it is scheduled to run. However, you would have already gone through the whole process of setting everything up.

How to cancel a Lightning Deal?

Though you can cancel a Lightning Deal at any time, if you cancel with less than 25 hours notice before the deal is scheduled to run, you will be charged a fee. Last-minute cancellation also increases your likelihood to be blacklisted from Lightning Deals in the Future. Ensure you check on the status of your deal regularly after submitting it for consideration, to give yourself enough lead time to cancel, if necessary. Since Amazon gives at least a week's notice before your deal runs, if you check on the deal status regularly, you should be able to easily prevent most situations where you would need to cancel at the last minute.

Another thing to keep in mind about Lightning Deal cancellation is that if you regularly cancel your deals, Amazon might blacklist you from creating Lightning Deals in the future. To avoid regular deal cancellations, be careful when creating a Lightning Deal submission.

To cancel a deal, you can do so within the Lightning Deals dashboard. Navigate to the All tab and choose the deal you want to cancel by clicking on view, and then select cancel deal.

At this point, you would have seen that the answer to the question depends on you. It's up to you to decide if a Lightning deal is worth it for your brand, or not. Every information you need to make that decision has been discussed here.

If you are on the fence about trying out a Lightning Deal, consider these points

  • The product you choose should be one that can benefit long-term from increased exposure and product reviews. Since Lightning Deals are simply another method of advertising your product, which requires you to reduce your profit margin on a particular unit of your product and pay the fee to run the deal, for a huge short-term boost in sales and brand recognition. However, there's no guarantee that the boost you receive will result in long-term growth, but if you have confidence in your product quality as well as in its long-term selling potential at its normal listing price, a Lightning Deal might boost the process significantly.
  • You get better in running Lightning Deals overtime. The more deals you run, the better you get to understand what to expect and how effective they can be for your product and category. Consider starting with a product you are overstocked on. Taking advantage of a Lightning Deal to get rid of such excess inventory is a good way to try out the system and learn how it works before you run one in the future for more valuable products.