It may just speak to AMZN competing against their own clients too much.
I would guess it competes against clients and is also a disservice to online shoppers. Further, I suspect it led to decreased sales of products. It did in my case.
Price, convenience, and quality are all factors in shopping on AMZN. But so is credibilty.
In seeking more ad income, one thing AMZN did was delete the “Customers who bought this item also bought” line and replace it with a second “Sponsored products related to this item” so that there were two such lines in many places, which, of course, brought in more ad money.
But it corrupted the online shopping experience.
First, I imagine most customers ignore the sponsored items lines. I know I did.
Second, using the “Customers who bought…” line effectively worked as a source of leads, if sometimes a tier or two down. In other words, it was the virtual equivalent of browsing in a focused section of a store. For starters, you know what others of like mind have been drawn too. And you go from there. But without that line, it is one less hook on which to hang a purchase decision (for some of us). And to suss out related items of interest.
Third, a second line of sponsored products (there’s been a line further on down the page for some time) flooded pages with ads of (often) far inferior products. For example, in the computer/electronics section there are often a lot of disguised Chinese imitations. (Experiences may vary. I use AMZN in the U.S. and Japan.)
Fourth, it decreased the overall credibility of the shopping experience. Anecdotally, it led to a 20 to 30% drop in the number of my purchases.
I see signs that AMZN might be retreating from this form of ad income, which would be welcome. It would makes sense to use more targeted, useful ad approach a la TTD, and more discreetly. AMZN is of course always testing extensively. With luck, they are in the process of figuring all of this out.
Long TTD and AMZN