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amazonprime-girlAmazon now has about 44 million U.S. Prime members, who will be eligible to shop tomorrow during the company’s Black Friday-like shopping event.

In a report released today, Consumer Intelligence Research Partners estimates that Amazon now has 44 million Prime members in the U.S., who spend an average of $1,200 a year, compared to about $700 a year for non-members.

primedayOn Wednesday, Amazon is hosting Prime Day, a 24-hour sale, which caters to members. Tomorrow, Amazon is promising significant mark downs on more merchandise than Black Friday, which is typically the biggest shopping day of the year.

Compared to the previous quarter, memberships are up by three million, but during major sales events, Amazon is able to add significantly more members. For instance, during the holiday’s last year, it said it was able to add 10 million subscribers because of Black Friday and the Christmas spending. Most members are offered a free 30-day trial, but then must pay $99 a year for the two-day shipping program and video streaming service.

There’s no question that tomorrow’s sale is being used to round up more paying subscribers. As the data shows, these customers are more loyal and spend more than customers who are not members.

Josh Lowitz, CIRP’s partner and co-founder, said the number of subscribers has more than doubled in a little more than two years. “Amazon adds millions of 30-day free trial members in the holiday shopping period. It then needs to convert these trial members to paid annual members, and then persuade those members to renew for subsequent years,” he said.

CIRP found that the program’s growth remains high because Amazon retains approximately 95 percent of Prime members after one year. Additionally, the average number of members who pay after the 30-day trial stands at roughly 70 percent.

 

Amazon’s efforts to make the Amazon Prime membership more valuable and further integrated into customers’ lives, with enhanced video and music offerings, as well as additional shipping benefits, appears to have paid off,” said Mike Levin, CIRP’s partner and co-founder.

This data only applies to the U.S., but Prime is also available in other countries, such as the U.K., Spain, Japan, Italy, Germany, France, Canada and Austria.

What can people expect during tomorrow’s sales bonanza?

Amazon said today Prime members will be able to shop thousands of “exclusive lightning deals,” and that new deals will be added every ten minutes throughout the day. Categories include consumer devices, tools, toys and pet supplies. For instance, the Amazon Fire TV stick will be $15 off, a 40-inch LED TV will cost $115, Bose headphones will be marked down to the lowest price ever on Amazon and a Roomba Pet Vaccum will be under $300.

Other retailers aren’t idly standing by, but have thrown together deals of their own. For instance, Walmart announced it would be rolling out thousands of specials and would lower its shipping minimum to $35 from $50 to compete with the online retailer’s Prime Day sale. Best Buy and Target are also have plans for special sales.

Amazon isn’t saying whether Prime Day will become an annual event, or is a one-time deal solely created for the company’s 20th anniversary this week.

CIRP’s results are based on a survey of 500 U.S. people, who made a purchase during the past quarter.

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