Amazon sold a lot of stuff during the holidays... again

Shopping at physical retail stores is insufferable these days. Have you been to a Walmart lately? Not only is it a soul-crushing experience all year, but during the holidays in November and December, it becomes particularly hell-like. Kids running around screaming, people sneezing and coughing without covering their mouths, plus generally dirty and disorganized aisles and shelves. It's gross. It gets better at stores like Target and Kohl's, but still, being around fellow humans can be an exercise in frustration. Thank goodness for online shopping.

As is typical, many people around the world turned to the web to buy Christmas and Hanukkah gifts this year. No retailer is more used than Amazon in this regard -- the undisputed king of online shopping. Once again, the company proclaims (brags) it has broken records this year -- without sharing exact numbers, of course. Ultimately, we can be confident that, records aside, Amazon sold a ton of stuff.

"Prime membership continued to grow this holiday season, with tens of millions of people starting Prime free trials or paid memberships, to benefit from FREE Same-Day, One-Day or Two-Day shipping, in addition to FREE two-hour delivery with Prime Now, and exclusive shopping and entertainment benefits. Prime members enjoyed shopping a wide selection of products with fast and free shipping throughout the season -- in fact, this holiday millions of unique items in the U.S. shipped with Prime FREE Same-Day, Prime FREE One-Day or FREE two-hour delivery with Prime Now," says Amazon.

The online retailer shares some of the top tech products purchased this holiday season.

  • Bose QuietComfort 35 (Series II) Wireless Headphones
  • Samsung Flat 65-inch 4K UHD 8 Series Smart LED TV
  • Apple iPad (Wi-Fi, 32GB) in Space Gray
  • Wemo Mini Smart Plug
  • Blue Yeti USB Microphone in Blackout
  • Wyze Cam 1080p HD Indoor Wireless Smart Home Camera
  • HP Sprocket Photo Paper

Jeff Wilke, CEO Amazon Worldwide Consumer says, "This season was our best yet, and we look forward to continuing to bring our customers what they want, in ways most convenient for them in 2019. We are thrilled that in the U.S. alone, more than one billion items shipped for free this holiday with Prime. Thank you to our employees all around the world who are committed to bringing our customers the widest selection of products with low prices and fast and free delivery options throughout the holidays and all year long."

Alexa and Amazon's own devices are a huge part of the company's business now, and the retailer shares some information below on those things.

  • Customers purchased millions more Amazon Devices this holiday season compared to last year – the best-selling Amazon Devices this holiday included all-new Echo Dot, Fire TV Stick 4K with all-new Alexa VoiceRemote, and Echo.
  • It was a record holiday season for Amazon’s Kids Edition devices; customers purchased more Echo Dot Kids Edition and Fire Kids Edition tablets than ever before.
  • Customers purchased millions of Amazon Fire TV, Fire Tablet, and Kindle products this holiday season.
  • Ring and Blink sold more devices this holiday season than ever before, as more and more customers are keeping their homes safe.
  • Customers made their homes even smarter this year with a record number of smart home devices sold on Amazon.com; best-selling smart home devices included Amazon Smart Plug, Ring Video Doorbell 2, TP-Link Kasa Smart Plug Mini Outlet, and the iRobot Roomba 690.
  • Customers used Alexa to listen to hundreds of millions more hours of music this holiday season compared to last holiday season, and on even more services – including Amazon Music, Spotify, Tidal, and AppleMusic, among others.
  • Customers asked Alexa to turn on their holiday lights tens of millions of times this holiday season, with the number one request being “Alexa, turn on the Christmas tree.”
  • Alexa delivered 8x as many reminders this holiday season compared to last.
  • Alexa set more than one hundred million timers this holiday season.
  • Customers requested nearly 3x as many recipes this holiday season compared to last and asked Alexa for cooking-related advice twice as much.
  • Alexa helped mix hundreds of thousands of cocktails this holiday season – with eggnog and Moscow Mule being the most requested drinks.
  • From carolers to delivery drivers and holiday guests, customers received millions of doorbell and motion announcements via Alexa this holiday season.
  • Customers were in to the festive spirit with Alexa Skill Blueprints – popular Blueprints this holiday season were The Holiday Story, Santa’s Letter, and the Hallmark Holiday Greeting.
  • The number one holiday song that customers requested this holiday season was “All I Want for Christmas is You” by Mariah Carey.
  • This holiday season, customers listened to more than one million holiday stories from Amazon Storytime on Alexa – the most popular holiday story was Rapping Paper.
  • Customers around the world asked Alexa how many days or sleeps until Christmas this holiday season – customers in the United Kingdom were the most excited, asking twice as much as customers in any other country.
  • Customers used Alexa nearly twice as much on Fire TV devices this holiday season compared to the same time period last year.

Did you do all your shopping online this year? Did you venture into any physical retail stores? Please tell me about your experience in the comments below.

Photo credit: pathdoc / Shutterstock

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