Amazon has recently been testing a new content initiative that allows publishers to place commerce-focused articles right within its website. And while this presents an opportunity for penetrating new digital real-estate, some publishers are skeptical.
Amazon’s Content Program Breakdown
These articles, which are fully shoppable, will both be indexed on Google, allowing users to discover the articles on the search engine as well as directly via Amazon’s website through a keyword search. Considering the sheer size of their user base, this new program could be an incredible boost for ecommerce publishers looking to get their content in front of Amazon’s customers.
As Digiday explains, these articles will be priced based on purchases rather than content licensing fees. This means that these discovery articles will point back to the product page inside Amazon, not the publisher’s website, and that the publisher will earn a commission of the sale.
For Amazon, this new content program is expected to improve the shopping experience, allowing shoppers to discover new products more easily and organically. With that said, some publishers are wary that Amazon might be introducing this initiative as a way to capture more affiliate commerce market share by training its customers to use its platform to receive product recommendations from third-parties. If this is successful, Amazon could consider dropping affiliate commission rates dramatically.
Currently, Amazon is offering somewhat vague details on precisely how the program will work for publishers who are looking for the specifics. And while the ecommerce juggernaut has confirmed that testing is underway, no comment was made on exactly how much publishers will be compensated.
There are rumors however, that Amazon is trying to become more collaborative with advertisers. In the Digiday article referenced above, it is mentioned that Amazon has formed a brand strategy team to try and work more cohesively with publishers, and that “momentum” has been starting to occur in terms of establishing more transparency and open communication.
Ultimately, there is still much to speculate for now, but this new initiative could be a fantastic opportunity for commerce-focused publishers, particularly smaller ones that are looking to get in front of Amazon’s massive audience. Time will tell just exactly how this will impact the affiliate landscape.