E-commerce titan Amazon (NASDAQ:AMZN) has coined a new phrase -- "the Turkey Five" -- referring to the shopping period that stretches from Thanksgiving Thursday to Cyber Monday. And it had a heck of a Turkey Five, apparently, selling 180 million items. It's still a bit hard to gauge just how good that works out to be though, because the data Amazon has released so far is a bit disconnected from context.
But in this segment from MarketFoolery, host Mac Greer and senior analysts Andy Cross and Ron Gross try to make sense of what we know so far. They also talk about the outlook for the company's advertising business, Amazon Prime, and AWS.
A full transcript follows the video.
This video was recorded on Nov. 27, 2018.
Mac Greer: Our final story, a good start to the week for Amazon. In a press release, Amazon called Cyber Monday "the single biggest shopping day in the company's history with the most products ordered worldwide." What does it mean?
Andy Cross: They coined a new term that I had not heard called "the turkey five."
Ron Gross: I love that! It sounds like a band, but a really bad band.
Cross: [laughs] A terrible band. Well, these are five very good things for Amazon. The five days between Thanksgiving and Cyber Monday. Clearly, the expectations of Amazon to do well were met relative to what people may have thought. They didn't announce the dollar numbers. But, clearly a good day. For a company that has probably near 50% market share of online sales, days like this are very important. We know the value of Singles Day over in China to the likes of Alibaba. I think it set a record this year, of more than $30 billion in one-day sales. Estimates are somewhere around $8 billion spent on Cyber Monday. If Amazon got about half of that, that's $4 billion in sales across Amazon's platform. Not bad, not bad at all.
Gross: They didn't release a lot of data, they just released a lot of big numbers. It's hard to know if they're good. The turkey five, they did 180 million items over those five days, which sounds like a big number, but I don't know if people were expecting 200 million or 150 million and what that translates into dollars. Obviously, it sounds like a big number. 18 million toys, more than 13 million fashion items on Black Friday and Cyber Monday combined. These are obviously huge numbers. Amazon continues, as Andy said, to be the major online player here. Most transactions are going through Amazon.
Cross: It's interesting. I did a little shopping this weekend and used Amazon, bought one or two things across their platform. Used it as the go-to place, rather than usually searching for Google. Now, I just go to Amazon. What's interesting about that is how they are starting to really leverage that into other businesses, including advertising sales. That's going to be a really nice business for them. We're already starting to see more and more advertising across Amazon's platform. Some estimates are that their advertising business is going to grow more than 35% per year over the next five years. One investment bank estimates up to $28 billion dollars of revenues per year in five years. As it continues to get more and more consumers to its platforms, they can leverage that. It used to be just AWS. Very important, clearly. But we're starting to see different value opportunities for Amazon outside of just traditional e-commerce sales.
Gross: We talk about Apple's ecosystem. You can also talk about Amazon's, as well. The three main growth drivers, I would have to say, going forward, are going to be Prime, which primes the pump, if you will. Over 100 million people pay for Amazon Prime right now. They recently raised the price from $99 to $119. People didn't seem to bat an eye at that increase. And then, as you said, Web Services. And then, advertising is really the up and comer. Those three things -- Prime, Web Services, and advertising -- are the future growth drivers of Amazon.
Greer: Amazon, that advertising comes at the expense of Google, right?
Cross: Google and Facebook are by far the largest online advertiser players. Amazon has probably only around 4% of the total market. Facebook and Google are the real giants in there through their various platforms. We know how hungry Jeff Bezos and that team can be when they are the smaller fish going after larger players, especially going after their margins. I'm actually a shareholder of Google and Facebook as well. And when I see that kind of market share and the potential for them to grow, and the way they're using those advertising placements inside the Amazon platform, both on traditional through your laptops or computers, as well through their mobile apps, you do think that's just going to be a really, nice very profitable business for Amazon over the next five, 10 years.
Gross: We talked earlier about Apple's stock getting smacked. Amazon is also right there with it, along with a lot of the other large tech stocks that led the rally up until now. Amazon's off about 22% since September. I'm a shareholder, it's not something I worry about. These things ebb and flow. It had quite a run. All of these stocks had quite a run. It depends when you bought, obviously, but you can't be upset with what's happened over the last several years if you own any of these stocks. It's something I continue to hold, I continue to be a proud shareholder. I don't worry about the dips.
Greer: Let's bring it back to Cyber Monday. Andy, you mentioned you picked up a few things. What'd you get?
Cross: I picked up last night, between 11:00 and 12:00 just got in to get my deal promos, I bought some things for the family for Christmas. Yesterday, I did not buy on Amazon. Friday, I did buy on Amazon.
Gross: I bought a ton -- maybe literally -- of protein bars. 15% off, Cyber Monday sale. thinkThin was the brand, for those who are interested. They're pretty tasty. High protein.
Greer: And it sounds like you got a deal.
Gross: I got a nice deal. I bought too many. They'll just sit in my pantry and my wife is going to be like, "What happened here?"
Cross: I need to be a little cagey because I think my wife listens to the show.
Greer: There's no way your wife listens to the show!
Cross: At least, she probably has not listened this long.
Gross: You know, the more you buy, the more you save.
Greer: I love that. I was eyeing some Crocs.
Gross: [laughs] Of course.
Greer: I have one pair, and I have a pair of imitation Crocs. They're not good. And Amazon had $9.99 Crocs. You're making money, essentially.
Cross: They're giving it away.
Greer: And then I'm like, I just can't get there. So then I looked at some fur-lined Crocs, which are really nice. You know, the winter Crocs? But then I'm like, I don't know if I can let myself go to that point.
Gross: Yeah, I think good decision.
Greer: Don't you think?
Gross: Yeah. I also think you need a hobby.
Cross: I want to know the decision-making process behind getting the imitation Crocs.
Gross: It's like imitation crab meat.
Greer: I'll tell you this, and I'm a Crocs shareholder. I will tell you that, I thought, Crocs, imitation Crocs, they're all the same. I picked these up for $7 at CVS. They're awful. They are not all the same. If you think, how difficult can Crocs be? Crocs is like the secret formula to Coca-Cola. No one else can make a Croc.
Cross: As Buffett says, price is what you pay, value is what you get.
Greer: I don't know what you're getting with my imitation Crocs, but it's not pretty.
Gross: Nothing good.