Amazon Q2 2014 Results Preview (from a seller’s perspective)

July 23, 2014

ChannelAdvisor Scot Wingo By Scot Wingo

After the market tomorrow, Thursday July 24th, 2014, Amazon will report their Q2 2014 results.  ComScore recently reported that US e-commerce grew at 11.8% y/y for the desktop which translates to 13.1% y/y with mobile included so that is the baseline for 2014 growth.  eBay reported first this quarter and came in at 8% y/y GMV growth which was ~5% below the ComScore baseline.

From our SSS data, Amazon averaged 29.8% y/y growth over the second quarter.

It will be interesting to see if eBay’s challenges around the data breach and Google SEO changes benefited Amazon, or if Amazon also saw some headwinds in Q2.

Key metrics we are watching:

  • Active users  – Every other metric is ‘backwards facing’, so we like active users because it is forward looking and because  it tells us how many shoppers are actively buying on Amazon going forward.  Last year (Q2 2013) there were 215m active users and last quarter (Q1 14) there were 244m.  This metric has been growing around 17% which would yield a Q2 14 target of 251m.
  • EGM y/y growth rate – This blog is for Amazon sellers and the bulk of Amazon sellers are in the EGM category (Electronics and General Merchandise).  Last Q (Q1 14) , EGM grew at 27% with the US at 28% and non-domestic at 26%. A year ago (Q1 13) EGM grew 29%.
  • % units from 3P – For the last year this metric has been ‘stuck’ at 40% after previously moving a point or so every Q.  For one Q, (Q2 2013) Amazon did mention that the metric was under pressure because they changed the way many digital books are sold (moving them from 3P to 1P) and that if they excluded that it would be 43%.  Unfortunately, they haven’t provided details on that again that I’ve seen, so we have been patiently waiting for this headwind to either dissipate or ‘we lap it’.  We’ll be watching this one closely.
  • Paid Unit Growth/Sold Item Growth – eBay reported sold item growth of 9.5% for Q2 2014.  Last Q (Q1 2014) Amazon reported 23% which was down from the year ago period (Q2 2013) of 29%.  It will be interesting to see if this metric accelerated or stayed flat from the first Q.

This dashboard shows all of the metrics we’ll be watching closely to see how Amazon performed a year ago and last Q.

Amzn_q2_preview_dashboard

 

We will have the highlights from the report out Friday – stay tuned!

This blog post was written by Scot Wingo, CEO, ChannelAdvisor.