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Amazon’s Impression Share Rises Across Google Shopping

Omnitail analysts have noticed an interesting shift over the past couple of weeks: Amazon has come back to Google Shopping. 

Amazon’s relationship with Google Shopping has been a tumultuous one. The two tech companies have often squared off, and many saw Google’s shift to organic listings for Shopping as a way to undercut Amazon’s market share with third-party sellers.

The retail giant began running PLAs in 2016, but abruptly pulled them in early 2018. Throughout 2018 and 2019, Amazon ads ran off and on, with notable halts around times of great demand (like Prime Day.) 

It perhaps comes as no surprise, then, that Amazon’s listings faded from Google Shopping as the coronavirus pandemic took hold and demand for online shopping rose. Although Amazon kept a nominal presence, our analysts began to notice a declining impression share for Amazon campaigns in auction insight reports earlier this spring. Take a look at these insights on Amazon’s impression share, from five accounts across multiple industries, from mid-March to early April: 

Amazon’s Impression Share Across Accounts

Week24-Feb02-Mar09-MarDelta
Client 144.83%37.11%< 10%-34.83%
Client 259.00%55.50%22.53%-36.47%
Client 331.31%33.40%14.38%-16.93%
Client 445.41%41.78%19.83%-25.58%
Client 538.48%38.03%11.87%-26.61%

These numbers remained relatively steady through April and May – likely because Amazon was already struggling to meet customer demand and saw less need to advertise. Now, though, they appear to have once again flipped the switch. Take a look at auction insights for these same five clients, pulled for the past two weeks in June: 

Week08-Jun15-JunDelta
Client 112.00%24%11%
Client 222.00%39%17%
Client 315.00%24%9%
Client 411.00%21%10%
Client 522.00%36%13%

Taking a closer look, we can see that for every one of these retailers, Amazon’s impression share rose again right around June 11-12. They haven’t yet reached pre-COVID levels, but are absolutely higher than they were for the previous listings. 

Date10-Jun11-Jun12-Jun13-Jun
Client 1< 10%23.65%22.66%31.22%
Client 210.61%36.86%36.18%35.49%
Client 3< 10%22.66%21.49%22.87%
Client 4< 10%19.02%17.18%16.63%
Client 513.78%35.26%35.14%34.70%

This naturally can have an impact on campaigns. Additional competition from Amazon can raise CPCs and affect both traffic and sales. We’ll need to keep a close eye on campaigns for the next couple of weeks, to ensure profits aren’t affected.

Of course, since organic listings were added to Google Shopping in May, paid impressions are only half the battle. Luckily, though, Amazon doesn’t seem to have had much of an impact on organic listings. We did not find that organic Shopping traffic significantly declined during this period for any of the above accounts.  

Are you seeing similar trends in your Shopping campaigns? Has Amazon reappeared as a competitor? Let us know if so – we’d love to hear if anyone else is experiencing a similar shift. 

Author

Christina is the Marketing Manager at Omnitail. She spent several years doing content, PPC, and email marketing for retail and tech companies before starting as an SEM Analyst at Omnitail. Christina now manages Omnitail's various marketing initiatives and enjoys reading and writing about trends in digital marketing.

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