It looks like after a year and a half of running Google Shopping campaigns, Amazon has stopped bidding on product listing ads.
According to data pulled by the digital marketing firm Merkle, Amazon’s shopping campaigns had begun to slow down near the end of Q1, and then they completely disappeared from Auction Insights reports on April 28, with no Amazon PLAs (product listing ads) reappearing since then.
“While it’s not uncommon for competitors, including Amazon, to disappear from an advertisers’ Auction Insights reports for a day or two at a time as a result of the natural day-to-day fluctuations in the auctions driving traffic, the widespread vanishing act observed over the last week point[s] to Amazon itself pausing its Shopping campaigns,” writes Merkle’s associate director of research, Andy Taylor, on the Merkle blog.
The online retail giant’s most consistent (and strongest) presence within Google’s Shopping campaigns was in the home goods product category, claims Merkle. Amazon also ran PLAs in other categories like furniture, office supplies and novelty gifts.
Merkle’s reports show that that Amazon’s Google Shopping impressions share in the home goods category had taken a significant downturn following the end of Q1.
Whether or not this move is for good or Amazon is just taking a break to retool their Shopping campaign strategy is anyone’s guess. Amazon PLAs began showing up in Google Shopping campaigns in December 2016.
While no one knows if Amazon is stopping its Shopping campaigns for good, the disappearance of their ads — and bidding power — will offer an opening for smaller retailers in the same product categories that lack the AdWords budget Amazon possesses.