This is unlike grocery stores where there are invisible "slotting fees". The particular items at the highly desirable "eye level" shelves are paid for. The colorful end caps at the ends of aisle are there because the vendors paid extra for those spots. Same with the books at Barnes & Noble that are prominently placed "face out" instead of "spine out" or stacked on the featured tables near the doors as you walk in. None of those retail manipulations have a sign saying "sponsored placement" on them.
If advertisers are going to influence the product display on the shelfs --
physical or virtual -- I prefer the way Bezos did it.
This is basically how Google works too, right? Do people distrust them for the same reason?
What if advertising is just like drug use? Most hate it and blame the suppliers, but there will always be demand for it. So, what if the marketplaces have a choice: Provide a "legal" way to advertise that is "safe" or outlaw advertising and push the behavior towards a "dangerous" black market.
Before App Store ads, app makers definitely used "black markets" to drive downloads... and now with the App Store ads I've heard rumors the app ecosystem is overall more safe.
What if it's the same for Amazon? By giving sellers a "legal" way to advertise, Amazon makes customers and the marketplace net safer.
Like drugs, there will always be a "black market" but the "legalisation" lessens its strengths and effects.
The only companies one can "trust" are the smaller ones - where the owner still has enough control to stamp his own sense of ethics onto the place.
Selling you products you wanted at a good price never precluded them from doing shady with the data that resulted from those transactions. Their incentive is to maximize income, so they could've always done all sorts of shady behind-the-scenes things with the data as long as they felt the risk of getting exposed and losing a lot of business as a result was sufficiently low.
Exactly as you'd understand it in this context. Trust in the human sense. e.g. I used to audit a small company had crazy loss making return rates but was still killing it overall.
Asked the financial manager about the returns losses - she's like that's what the owner of the company decreed. That's odd. Asked the owner wtf is up with these numbers. Turns out they basically refund for anything & everything. Owners stance was "either product delivers and the customer doesn't complain...or we give back the money". There was no middle ground in his world view.
That's what I meant by owner stamping his own ethics onto the company.
That said this guy had industry on his side. Anyone that needed his product had just by definition just spent big money on an associated asset. So 99% of his clients were serious and had money.
As a side note - they slaughtered the competition too. For customers that aren't price sensitive the combination of quality product and quality company stance wins.
When they just sold things, they had a very clear way to gain from me: setting prices so that they were profitable. I'm told their margins have definitely crept up from the early days, but I'm fine with that.
But that's different than them selling me as a product to other people. I can pretty easily evaluate prices and shop somewhere else if I think Amazon's are too high. If, though, they are selling the ability to manipulate me, that's intentionally hard for me to notice and price.
Once they're selling the power to shape my behavior, suddenly they're not on my side anymore. I can't trust them as much, because for any given interaction, it's not clear whether they aim to serve me or aim to serve me to somebody else.
That and cheap, fast shipping.
Ex: Maybe a particular page has too many ads/has ads at all/etc. Or maybe a particular service doesn't really do what you would like.
Disclosure: Work at Amazon, not on anything customer facing.
If Amazon doesn't compromise the UX, including privacy, with ads, then I think most of us will live with it.
Apple swings decisively against this trend. Alignment of interests is a powerful social device.
(In other words, I agree with you.)
we sell DIY products, which can be damaged easily (improper electrical connections, poor RTFM, etc). the no-questions-asked return policy is not great for us.
Case in point, Super Mario Odyssey. Preordered from Amazon, and they've been sending me nonstop emails to try and sell me additional copies ever since.
At least their marketing emails tend to come from a different source from tracking notification emails so you can filter them with ease.
If you'd like to take me up on my offer, please file a support case in the usual way to report this issue; then ping me at my work email address from the email address associated with your account to let me know you've done that. Ideally, explain what you did here in the support case, and provide the full email headers of the email that you expected not to receive (or at minimum, subject line and date). That's what will likely be needed to pinpoint the account and the problem. I'll keep an eye on it and do my best to ensure it's driven to resolution with the right people. We should expect follow-up and further communication to occur via the support case. I'll preemptively ask for patience since certain issues can take a bit to investigate.
I've bought books for myself then bought them again as gifts for someone else. I bet a lot of people who bought Switch games for themselves will buy more copies as holiday presents.
A final category of products are virtually never purchased multiple times except as gifts. Video games and other media most likely fall into this category, and targeting logic should understand that. I understand the OP's complaint.
Conclusion: alibaba & aliexpress are the real kings, forget about amazon.
We have agreements with our vendors to receive funds for advertising services, cooperative marketing efforts, promotions, and volume rebates. We
generally consider amounts received from vendors to be a reduction of the prices we pay for their goods, including property and equipment, or services, and
therefore record those amounts as a reduction of the cost of inventory, cost of services, or cost of property and equipment"
I don't really see that Amazon can go so bold to block customers that come to the websites with adblockers on, unlike other business like Youtube/Facebook. After all it is a retail website, ads is just easy money they collect on the way.