There is no overstating the importance of Amazon in the modern eCommerce landscape.
It’s online-selling juggernaut, with millions of active users making the most of the platform as both buyer and seller. The platform has also undergone a number of big changes in recent months – these have seen Amazon’s capabilities extended, and the platform made more user-friendly for buyers and sellers alike.
For sellers, the Amazon Demand Side Platform (DSP for short) allows advertisers to maximise retargeting efforts to grow demand for products. In this blog, we’ll take a look at Amazon DSP, and why you should try out the self-service Amazon DSP for yourself if you sell online…
What is Amazon DSP?
Carried out as part of an extensive rebrand, Amazon has now brought together its advertising capabilities (inclusive of AMS, AAP and AMG) under the new umbrella term, Amazon Advertising. Amazon Advertising is divided into two distinct segments – the Advertising Console and Amazon DSP. While the Advertising Console is focused on traditional PPC (pay per click) ads, Amazon DSP offers display ads and pay per impression ad options.
The DSP allows advertisers to buy ad placements (display and video), and provides a suite of tools to better assist businesses keen to engage with buyers on the Amazon platform and elsewhere. Advertisers can use these tools to raise awareness of their products, highlight benefits and features and drive demand and engagement. There are lots of places where advertisers can reach their target audience, thanks to Amazon DSP. They include:
- Via the Amazon website – for reaching potential customers who are browsing the marketplace
- Via Kindle –Kindle-specific advertising to reach readers on-the-go
- Via Fire TV – for targeted advertising, while users stream a wide variety of TV shows.
In addition, users of the Amazon DSP can also reach their audience via:
- FreeDive (the IMDB streaming platform)
- Approved third party providers
Amazon DSP is inherently flexible, allowing users to create ads which encompass a wide range of different formats. They are defined as:
- Mobile Interstitial Ads – these have become a popular option for advertisers, thanks to a high rate of impressions which can in turn help to boost revenue.
- Mobile Banner Ads – as seen in mobile advertising, banner ads are static adverts which use a simple banner format.
- Desktop Display Ads – this is one of the most easily identifiable advertising formats, as well as a commonly used style of ad placement.
- Image & Text Ads – a straightforward advertising format with plenty of scope for advertisers.
- In-stream Video Ads – these ads appear during an internet video, and often closely resemble the format of a television advert.
Amazon DSP User Profile
Amazon DSP can be used by both third-party sellers and Amazon vendors, though it is best suited to brands who want to reach their audience in new and creative ways.
It allows for two forms of management – one which is self-service (Enterprise Self Service) and one which is managed by Amazon. By using DSP, users are able to buy display and video ads and boost the reach of their existing advertising activities. It can also be used by sellers who don’t currently use Amazon to make sales, but nonetheless want to access the vast Amazon audience.
How it works
The Amazon DSP uses modern technology to fuel greater efficiency in advertising, and to empower users who want to buy and manage a variety of online ad formats. Amazon DSP serves a number of different purposes, but most prominently it can help to develop greater brand awareness and visibility.
This is a fantastic way to ensure your brand gains more attention and encourage potential buyers to engage with the products on offer, boosting consideration. Working with Amazon DSP can also elevate the brand above competitors, which is a helpful tactic no matter whether working with a new company or a more established brand.
Amazon DSP also helps to drive more purchases and increase sale volume. It works brilliantly for brands who experience multiple views yet record a disappointing number of sales. By re-engaging with customers, Amazon DSP can be used to bring products back to front of mind, give them a place in shopper shortlists and ultimately, drive more conversions.
The Amazon Advertising Console provides plenty of scope to market to customers, but there is only so much that can be done before retargeting is required. Using Amazon DSP ensures customers who may otherwise be overlooked can re-enter the conversation, meaning previous customers and former browsers are more likely to make a purchase. This is especially key in the saturated online marketplace, where customers expect an omnichannel experience and as a result, are bombarded with buying options at every stage of the journey.
Brands can gain access to a wide range of customers and potential customers. These customers (or audiences) are comprised of two subsets, defined as:
- In-Market audiences – these are defined by their prior browsing and purchasing behaviour during the past 30 days, such as searches for applicable keywords which apply to the product offered by the advertising brand.
- Lifestyle audiences – this audience is reflected by its broadly connected interests, which can be reached to help ensure the brand’s product is top of mind for customers and prospects searching and shopping for similar products. The reach of this audience is wider, encompassing activities over the last year.
Retargeting and Advertising
Brands eager to maximise their brand recall and engage once more with clients who have signalled a high purchase intent can be reached by the Amazon DSP retargeting functionality. This includes a variety of options which enable brands to reach an audience which is both as broad as possible while remaining relevant.
The targeting functionality includes a range of different options, such as:
- Brand halo remarketing – to help retarget Amazon visitors who looked at other products sold by the brand.
- Similar product remarketing – ensuring brands can reach Amazon buyers who searched for similar products to the ones being sold.
- Pixel-based retargeting – for shoppers who have visited the brand’s official website.
- Product remarketing – to retarget visitors who looked at promoted products, but weren’t converted to buyers.
In addition, Amazon DSP uses Dynamic Ecommerce Ads to help give products an added boost of visibility, which in turn provides brands with access to millions more Amazon customers, showing them ads which link directly to product detail pages on the platform. These ads are also immensely useful for brands eager to improve their sales with advertising targeted around products, as they show each repeat customer/prospect advertising formed around prior browsing and purchase behaviours.
The Amazon DSP Difference
Amazon has begun to really spread its wings as an advertising platform over the last few months, and it is currently the third largest online ad platform, competing with Google and Facebook’s monopoly of the market.
A major complaint amongst users has been the confusing interface, and the division of Amazon’s various marketing and advertising services. Amazon addressed this after combining everything into one rebranded advertising platform, helping add a more user-friendly approach which is serving to draw in more customers. In particular, Amazon DSP provides a real alternative to competitive advertising options, and stands out as distinctive and separate for one simple (yet vital reason). Whilst both Facebook and Google are advanced platforms which match audiences to products which will interest them with pinpoint accuracy, it is Amazon which has unrivalled data about what customers actually want to buy – and the growing reach to access customers across the web and pique their interest.
Some have proven sceptical about Amazon’s ability to take on the dual role of both online seller and advertiser, yet the platform has such a large and influential presence that it would be foolish to discount it’s potential to brands of all sizes and scales. Hundreds of millions of users regularly shop online via Amazon, providing a tremendous amount of data on every stage of the customer journey. It is this information which sets the Amazon DSP apart.
Amazon DSP Self Service
While those who’d rather take the pressure off can opt for letting Amazon manage their advertising activity, using Amazon’s self-service capabilities ensures a more hands-on approach. This is often a favoured methodology of Amazon agencies, as it allows for greater control and a broader understanding of the marketing process. In addition, it is more accessible than the managed alternative, which is currently only open to brands with a high ad spend.
It should be noted that brands can only access Amazon’s Self Service portal via an agency, so it is a method which is served best by those for whom Amazon marketing is a big priority. Crucially, those using the Amazon DSP do not need to sell products on Amazon – helping to open up this option for a wider audience.
Amazon’s new rebrand and the advent of a self-service option on Amazon DSP solidifies the platform’s growing influence in the digital marketing world, and will help Amazon’s advertising options benefit a growing audience of advertisers and customers seeking their perfect new product.