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Is Amazon Hiding DSP Advertising From You? 

  • March 25, 2022
  • /
  • Chuck Kessler
woman with dark hair in red top holding hands over her eyes

If Amazon really wanted their DSP ad platform to stand out, they sure chose a funny way to do it. In launching their similarly named Delivery Service Partnership in 2018, there were a number of other names they might have chosen. Why not pick something else?

It feels a little like how Las Vegas casinos direct traffic away from games such as poker and blackjack that favor skill and practice. Instead, rows of gamblers with cups full of quarters sit at slot machines battling algorithms that invariably favor the casino. 

My Amazon DSP conspiracy theory is mostly tongue in cheek. Still, I do feel that Amazon’s Demand-Side Platform might just be the best way to tip the advertising odds away from the “house” and in your favor.

Demand-Side Platform is the best kept secret in Amazon advertising!

What is Amazon DSP?

Amazon DSP (demand-side platform) advertising allows Amazon sellers to programmatically buy ads to reach new and existing audiences on and off Amazon.

Here’s the best way to try to explain Amazon DSP. 

You know those times when you see an ad pop up on your social media feed or website page promoting a product you JUST interacted with on another platform? Yep, that’s Amazon DSP advertising. 

In the last few weeks, as part of my work here at CANOPY Management, I’ve been doing research on Helium 10’s software tools. As you can see from the following screenshot, those searches haven’t gone unnoticed.

Demand-Side Platform uses algorithms to collect data from online users in order to show them ads that cater to their needs. The data that DSP collects focuses on demographics, interests, device usage, and online behavior. Then, an Amazon DSP campaign does the heavy lifting of identifying the optimum location and medium for your programmatic ads.

In the last year, access to the kind of data that helps marketers (and Amazon sellers) make these decisions has become increasingly rare. 

First-Party Data

Simply put, first-party data is information collected by the web property or app itself. For example, when you collect subscriber and buyer information in your Shopify store, that’s first-party data. Similarly, first-party data is the result when information is collected from Amazon shoppers. 

There are many restrictions coming from Apple, Google, and other platforms centered around the sharing of data to third parties. But, when you gain data from a voluntary opt-in through a property you control, you aren’t sharing anything with a third party.

This means that all tracking throughout properties you own or within your properties owned by the ad platform will still work.

Amazon knows what you buy. Amazon knows that you put that book on your wishlist last week and that you were browsing for a new pair of running shoes on Tuesday. You won’t find audience insights as powerful as that anywhere else.

Amazon DSP allows you to take advantage of that first-party data! 

Image credit – Amazon

Taking Amazon’s Sponsored Display Ads One Step Further

Amazon Sponsored Display Ads use mined data to target audiences based on shopping behavior. An important feature of a Sponsored Display ad campaign is the ability to target (and retarget) shoppers once they’ve left Amazon’s marketplace. 

Amazon DSP takes that ability to target audiences one step further. Demand-Side Platform allows advertisers to really drill down to target a specific audience. Advertisers using Amazon Display have to make do with less filtered audiences. 

Amazon DSP also offers additional creative customization and programmatic benefits and allows advertisers to customize headlines, brand logos, and images.

Here are other big differences between the two ad platforms. 

Amazon Sponsored Display ads are a self-service PPC ad targeting the mid to lower part of the advertising funnel. They also require that you sell on Amazon. They are designed to drive prospective customers back to your Amazon listings. 

Amazon DSP ads are not self-serve, they are managed by Amazon or an approved agency such as CANOPY Management. Instead of pay per click, DSP ads are charged in CPM or Cost-per-1000-impressions. They also target the entire advertising funnel. Most importantly, Amazon DSP ads drive traffic to your Amazon listings as well as to your own website, a custom landing page or other third-party sites. 

What is a “Programmatic” Ad? 

Experts have estimated that by the end of 2021, 88% of all digital display marketing in the US will have been spent through programmatic advertising.

Programmatic advertising involves the automated process of purchasing and selling online ads. This tactic affords advertisers the ability to place ads across multiple channels with little human interaction. 

The ad buying process is automated and constantly adjusted in real time. Increasingly sophisticated algorithms automatically choose the best ad spaces, both on and off of Amazon. 

The algorithm is constantly learning from Amazon customers’ behavior. And, as with any artificial intelligence program, the more you use it, the smarter it gets. 

How Can You Take Advantage of Amazon DSP?

There are two options to put Amazon DSP advertising to work for you.

  1. Managed by Amazon: The managed-service option is designed for companies that want access to Amazon DSP inventory, with consultative service, or for those with limited programmatic advertising experience. The managed-service option typically requires a minimum spend of $50,000 USD (minimum may vary per country).
  2. (Managed) Self-service: Self-service customers are in full control of their campaigns. Self-service is a bit of a misnomer. This option can only be accessed through third-party agencies. Managed self-service provides users with an attractive blend of control, with ready access to the agency’s DSP expertise. It also allows for more flexibility in ad spend. That’s not a small thing! 

One of the biggest benefits of CANOPY Management’s DSP services is having the ability to combine the best of both options. Our DSP experts use algorithms to do the easier stuff. That creates bandwidth for CANOPY’s DSP experts to be “hands-on” with our partners’ DSP advertising campaigns.

CANOPY Management’s DSP Team is Here to Help 

Amazon knows what people are buying and searching for on their site. Leveraging that powerful data and unmatched targeting capability, we’ve driven over millions of dollars in product sales for our DSP partners.

CANOPY’s DSP experts will help you reach customers wherever they are online—from browsing their favorite news sites to watching tv from their Amazon Fire stick—and bring them back to your website or Amazon product page.

Only Amazon DSP can give you full visibility into how your off-Amazon ads are converting into on-Amazon sales. CANOPY’s DSP team harnesses this data to provide comprehensive reporting and expert optimization to maximize your ROI.

As a full-service Amazon agency, CANOPY Management incorporates strategic insights of your entire strategy into our approach to DSP. CANOPY are experts in Amazon advertising. We know how to target customers at every stage of the journey from awareness and consideration to purchase and loyalty.

Ready to Increase Brand Awareness and Start Scaling Using Amazon’s Data?

Speak to a CANOPY Strategist About Our PPC & DSP Services!

Let’s talk

If you are considering Amazon DSP advertising, partnering with a full service Amazon agency like CANOPY Management is an obvious next step. 

CANOPY Management leverages our experience from across all corners of the Amazon industry to help you scale your business, and gain market share. This partnership allows you exacting control of your Amazon business. At the same time you will benefit from the wealth of experience and expertise of the CANOPY Management team.

It’s a new year and with the growth of eCommerce, this rising online-selling tide is going to lift a lot of boats. Now is a great time to reap some benefits yourself!