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Monday, December 05, 2022

Are Ads Causing Shoppers to Lose Faith in Amazon search results?


Are ads causing shoppers to lose faith in Amazon search results?   by Matthew Stern in RetailWire.

Amazon.com has long been the main go-to place for online product search, but a recent Washington Post article finds that it is no longer giving customers what they want because advertisements are muscling out the real search results.

Running a search for “cat beds,” the Post found that the entire first screen of results displayed advertisements masquerading as listings rather than products arrived at because they provided the best combination of price and quality. The results included one ad that featured a dog in the picture, rather than a cat.

On the first five pages of search results, more than half of the listings were either ads or Amazon’s own products. A Profitero study found that Amazon lists sponsored products on its first page of search results at a rate twice that of Walmart and four times that of Target. Other online outlets, like food delivery platforms and Google and Apple’s app stores, have also started displaying ads as search results.

Amazon’s ad business grew 58 percent in 2021, making it the third largest online ad seller, according to a Recode article. Six high-volume sellers told Recode that to succeed on Amazon today, sellers have to spend between 10 and 20 percent of their sales on ads.

Amazon’s practices surrounding how it lists search results have been criticized before. ... ' 

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