The largest shopping search engine, Amazon, has acquired the largest independent buy-side advertising platform, Sizmek. The purchase of Sizmek makes Amazon a direct competitor to Google Ads and instantly alters the advertising landscape.
Acquiring Sizmek makes sense for Amazon Advertising because their ad sales have become a multi-billion dollar business, and this acquisition will help them grow it even further by leveraging Sizmek’s Ad Server and DCO technology. However, aside from absorbing their revenue, it’s not clear how they’re going to integrate it into their current platform. Amazon publicly stated that for the time being, Sizmek
will operate separately from Amazon Advertising.
Concerns about Google and Ad Quality
The acquisition raises questions about the future of Amazon’s relationship with Google. Amazon dominates in Google’s product-related SERPs and there have been rumors for years that Google and Amazon have a private arrangement that may benefit both companies. If those rumors are true, then that deal may be in jeopardy.
Amazon Advertising as a service also has concerns. Their product search results have become littered with sponsored ads that often bury the correct items far down the page. Amazon is trying to improve its ad results by blocking ads that promote products that don’t sell well, but consumers are becoming increasingly dissatisfied with their search results.