If you've been anxiously waiting for the start of Amazon Prime Day, and went to the website at 3 p.m. ET to score some deals, you may have encountered a problem. Wondering what to do if Amazon Prime isn't working for you during Prime Day? Lucky for you, there is a pretty simple way to access the Prime Day deals. If Amazon Prime is working for you as it should, those of us running into trouble are having major FOMO.
"Some customers are having difficulty shopping, and we’re working to resolve this issue quickly," an Amazon spokesperson tells Bustle. "Many are shopping successfully — in the first hour of Prime Day in the U.S., customers have ordered more items compared to the first hour last year. There are hundreds of thousands of deals to come and more than 34 hours to shop Prime Day."nIf you're curious what all the fuss is about, here's the quick and dirty. Some users log on, select the "shop all deals" button, and are taken to a blank page.
I tried to access the Amazon Prime Day deals using Google Chrome, Apple Safari, and the Amazon app. The web browsers take me to a blank page while the app repeatedly gives me an error. I also tried to go directly to each department to access deals, but entered the same loop of doom that eventually turned up an error page with a cute dog. Refreshing doesn't work either.
Same situation? TechCrunch posted a solution that will not only allow you to access Amazon Prime Day deals, it also donates money to your favorite cause. Yes, it's Amazon Smile to the rescue. If you access your Amazon Prime account via smile.amazon.com, you can then select the "shop all deals" button, get out of the Prime Day death spiral, and go straight to the deals.
While it's not clear whether it's the unbridled excitement of millions of shoppers trying to access the site at once, or just a run-of-the-mill technical glitch, it couldn't come at a worse time — the beginning of Amazon Prime Day. Frustrated shoppers have taken to Twitter to report the crash and to make sure they're not the only ones, similar to how California residents go to Twitter to see if anyone else felt an earthquake or if they just have vertigo. (Only, you know, it's worse, because this is Amazon and not the Earth's tectonic plates merely shifting.)
TechCrunch reported that users who have been lucky enough to access Prime Day deals encountered issues when trying to check out. For those who can't access the deals beyond the few featured products on the Prime Day landing page (those links do work), are pretty bummed considering the sad combination of it being Monday and the shopping spree they'd planned to have at their desks in lieu of working getting derailed.
The Prime Day problem seems to be specific to U.S.-based shoppers as the U.K. Amazon Prime Day links seem to work just fine. While system errors are reportedly rare for Amazon, Reuters reported that a 2017 outage, which just happened on a regular day, also sent frustrated shoppers to air their grievances on social media. The story noted that Amazon generates around $150,000 in sales a minute in North America alone, which are surely much, much higher during Amazon Prime Day. This means that the headache isn't just a headache for you, it's a problem for Amazon too.
It would be great if Amazon rectified the situation by extending Prime Day for the same amount of time their systems are down. And hey, some extra saving for Prime members wouldn't hurt either. In the meantime, get your Prime Day on via Amazon Smile where you can feel less guilt about spending money you don't have because a portion of it goes to a worthy cause of your choice.
This story has been updated to include comment from Amazon.