Tuesday, September 28, 2021

    Everything to know about Amazon’s advertising business, which is $21 billion and growing

    Everything to know about Amazon’s advertising business, which is $21 billion and growing

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    Andy Jassy

    AWS CEO Andy Jassy, who is set to become Amazon CEO, helped oversee the cloud unit’s rise.
    Mike Blake/Reuters

    Marketers cut ad spending in the pandemic, but e-commerce advertising has boomed as people shop more from home — with Amazon leading the pack.

    EMarketer said Amazon claimed 10.3% of the US digital ad market in 2020, up from 7.8% in 2019 — competing with Google and Facebook for ad budgets. That growth has attracted Walmart, Instacart, Walgreens and other retailers that have joined Amazon in vying for a slice of the pie.

    Here’s the latest on what we know about Amazon’s moves to grow its advertising business.

    Amazon’s ad business is big and growing

    Amazon took in about $21.5 billion from advertising in 2020, up from roughly $9.3 billion in the year-ago period.

    While that amount is a tiny sliver of Amazon’s revenue from retail sales and Amazon Web Services, its cloud business, advertising is one of its fastest-growing areas. The tech giant continues to cut into advertisers’ search budgets that mostly go to Google. It’s also ramping up its audio and video sales pitch.

    Who runs Amazon’s ad business?

    As its advertising ambitions have grown, Amazon has cultivated a team of execs who pitch advertisers on its ad business.

    They include longtime Amazon employees like Colleen Aubrey, who is part of Amazon’s executive suite; and big names from ad agencies and brands who work directly with advertisers.

    Amazon faces growing competition for ad dollars

    Amazon’s advertising has soared as people do more of their shopping online — but other big retailers and delivery companies like Walmart, CVS, and Instacart are nipping at its heels by building their own ad businesses.

    Amazon’s ad business is tough to navigate

    Marketers have complained that Amazon is tough to navigate. Amazon said its complex approach is by design, but at the same time, it’s been rolling out tools to make it easier for marketers to buy and measure ads. Nonetheless, its complicated structure has rise to a cottage industry of firms that specialize in helping marketers navigate the site.

    How to get a job at Amazon

    Amazon is consistently looking for advertising talent, but its tough interviewing process and particular culture can make it hard for outsiders to break into the company.

    We talked to insiders about how to ace the interview process.

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