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eCommerce Intelligence: 6 Holiday Insights from Amazon’s Best-Selling Products

January 27, 2015
Written By

With eCommerce continuing to drive this year’s holiday sales, Profitero analyzed data from our new Amazon FastMovers reports for December 2014 to identify Amazon’s best-selling products in Electronics, Health & Personal Care, Toys & Games, Clothing, Grocery & Gourmet Food and Beauty.

The holiday season represents a key annual opportunity for retailers and manufacturers alike. The average US consumer celebrating Christmas, Kwanzaa, and/or Hannukah was expected to spend over $800 on gifts, decorations and other goods in the 2014 season, according to a survey by the National Retail Federation. Furthermore, the average shopper was expected to do 44% of their holiday shopping online in 2014.

Given the importance of the holiday season to annual sales—and the growing share of those sales that eCommerce and Amazon represents—Profitero analyzed data from our new Amazon FastMovers reports for December 2014 to identify Amazon’s best-selling products.

Profitero’s Amazon FastMovers reports benchmark best-selling products at Amazon in more than 10 categories in the US and UK. Read on for our analysts’ key holiday highlights within Electronics, Health & Personal Care, Toys & Games, Clothing, Grocery & Gourmet Food and Beauty. You can also view our SlideShare presentation here.

1. ELECTRONICS: In December 2014, Amazon’s share of the Electronics FastMovers 100 grew from 24% to 34%, driven largely by Fire tablets (tweet this stat)

Amazon gained an incremental 8 new Fire tablets on the best sellers list—3 of which were kids’ editions.

The arrival of the Fire Phone to the best sellers list in December was likely due to the significant discount taken by Amazon, which dropped the unlocked phone’s price from $449 to $199.

Despite the influx of Amazon products, the average price of Amazon products on the Electronics best sellers list was virtually unchanged at $132 in December and $134 in November.

Given that Amazon’s own products have no third-party sellers and are always Prime-eligible, electronics manufacturers need a strategy to compete in the competitive holiday season. At the very least, a strategy that will involve ensuring most products are Prime-eligible. (In December, 15% of Electronics best sellers were not Prime-eligible.)

2. HEALTH & PERSONAL CARE: As holiday gifting reached its peak, fitness wristbands, electric toothbrushes, and electric groomers topped the charts for Health & Personal Care’s December 2014 FastMovers list (tweet this stat)

Of the 10 products gaining the most spots on the best sellers list in December 2014, 4 were Fitbit fitness wristbands, 3 were electric groomers, and 2 were electric toothbrushes.

Gifting for these particular products appeared to pick up in December; in November 2014, only a single electric toothbrush and no fitness wristbands or electric groomers made the top climber list.

Given the increasing popularity of wearable technology, manufacturers and retailers should take note of these highly desirable products that grew in popularity later in the holiday season.

3. TOYS & GAMES: Toys & Games became the most dynamically-priced category in December 2014, with 9 additional price changes per product across sellers compared to November (tweet this stat)

As sellers competed for last-minute holiday shoppers, the Toys & Games category saw an average of 20 price changes per product. (Prices were collected daily.) Although 66% of categories were more price-volatile in December 2014 than in November 2014, the average number of price changes across all categories was just 10 in December.

Despite this price volatility, the top 100 Toys & Games products sold at the same average price in December as in November ($23.69).

As noted in our December analysis, Disney’s Frozen franchise products and Cards Against Humanity remain highly popular items with 9 and 6 items on the best sellers list, respectively.

Classic toy manufacturer Lego continues to be one of the most popular toy brands, with 9 products featuring in our FastMovers 100 for December (a ranking of the products with the best cumulative sales performance in the month, calculated as a function of rank and tenure on Amazon’s public best sellers lists).

4. CLOTHING: Seasonal and holiday items accounted for 23 of our FastMovers 100 Clothing products in December 2014 (tweet this stat)

As the weather turned colder, the FastMovers 100 list for Clothing quickly shifted to cold-weather items. There were 39 new arrivals in Clothing including pajamas, scarves, gloves and ‘Ugly’ Christmas sweaters.

Among the FastMovers 100 list, there were 9 scarves, 6 gloves (including 4 with touchscreen compatibility), 4 slippers, 3 pajamas and 1 ugly sweater.

Despite the low star rating of the “Ugly sweater” (3.6), it was the 5th top climber in the Clothing category, an indication of the popular trend of Ugly sweater themed parties.

5. GROCERY & GOURMET FOOD: 16 FastMovers 100 products included “gift” in the product title (tweet this stat)

16 products in Grocery & Gourmet Food included “gift” in their product titles, with an average price of $30. Of these “gift” products, 14 were new entrants in December, and, interestingly, 10 of the 16 gift items were sold directly by Amazon.

Sellers should be sure to include “gift” in the product title of popular, giftable items in the holiday season to get the most visibility with holiday shoppers.

6. BEAUTY: There were 4x the number of fragrance products in December 2014 compared to November on the FastMovers 100 list (tweet this stat)

According to the FastMovers 100 list in December 2014, 12 products referenced either “parfum” or “toilette” in the product titles, compared to 3 products in November 2014. Of these best-selling fragrance products, half were for men.

Perfume brands Dolce & Gabbana and Calvin Klein were among the top 7 brands by number of items and grew their share of the FastMovers 100 in December.

Beauty also appeared to have high price volatility in December 2014. The average item in Beauty had 18 price changes, making Beauty the 3rd most price-volatile category.

Given Calvin Klein’s and Dolce & Gabbana’s gains in December, brands may benefit from providing more fragrance selections to take advantage of the upsurge in demand in the second half of the holiday season.

Retailers and manufacturers alike can use trends in pricing, product attributes, and product ratings from Amazon’s best sellers pages in order to fine-tune their own retail strategies in 2015.

For the full results and analysis, subscribe to Profitero’s Amazon FastMovers reports for free monthly updates on best sellers across 12 Amazon product categories in the US and UK.

Request FastMovers Report About Profitero’s Amazon FastMovers reports

In each country, Amazon updates its 100 best-selling products in each category hourly.

Profitero monitors these best seller lists in the US (more than 4.9 million products) and the UK (more than 2.1 million products) daily and analyzes products’ performance over specific time periods to produce a cumulative ranking of best-selling products. We release these FastMovers reports monthly for the following categories:

  • Baby
  • Beauty
  • Chocolate
  • Clothing
  • Electronics
  • Grocery & Gourmet Food
  • Health & Personal Care
  • Office Products
  • Toys & Games
  • Prime Pantry (Amazon US only)
  • Pet Food
  • Watches

Use the Amazon FastMovers reports to:

  • Identify strong-selling new products in your category, including launches from competitors
  • Benchmark high-performing products’ pricing, pack configuration, ratings & reviews, and other attributes
  • Gauge the importance of participating in Amazon programs such as Subscribe & Save and Prime Pantry


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