Purchasing Intent and History Coming Together

I previously noted that 30% of shoppers start their searches for products on Amazon.

Now Amazon is jumping into that business in an even bigger way by offering targeted ads on its websites, Kindle e readers, and its own advertising network.  Amazon’s competitive advantage is the browsing and purchasing data it has on its nearly 200 million active shoppers, i.e., most everyone.

As the FT reports:

Marketers note that Amazon is now charging prices that rival its competitors and that its ad business stands out from the pack because of its massive reach, rich data-set based on actual customer data and personalisation techniques. The more that consumers and advertisers go directly to Amazon to search for products, the bigger the threat the company poses to others – especially Google – experts and analysts said.

Colin Gillis, technology analyst at BGC Partners, said: “What’s the difference between a user and a customer? The difference is a customer has given you their credit card data. Google has millions of users, but far fewer customers.”

The combination of purchasing intent (as demonstrated by the 30% figure above) with verified purchase history (as demonstrated by nearly 200 million active customers) is worth watching.