Beginner’s Guide to Amazon Ads

It’s hard to resist the convenience of Amazon – whether you’re buying clothes, cleaning supplies or random appliances. Even if you’re not an Amazon user, your target audience likely are. Each month more than 197 million people across the world visit Amazon (which is more than the entire population of Russia). With so many people using Amazon’s platform, it begs the question why your business is not implementing Amazon Ads to attract website visits, drive brand awareness and generate sales.

One of the top benefits of advertising on Amazon is because it’s the king of online shopping. DigiDay sums up the power of Amazon Ads perfectly, “Google has search data and Facebook knows interest levels, but Amazon has real power because it knows what people are buying and how they’re doing it.”

In this guide we will be covering what businesses need to know about advertising on Amazon:

  1. – What Are Amazon Ads
  2. – Do Businesses Have to List a Product on Amazon to Deliver Ads?
  3. – How Much Do Amazon Ads Cost?
  4. – What Ad Formats Are Available?
  5. – Can Google / Facebook Ads Strategies be Applied to Amazon?

What Are Amazon Ads?

Standard Amazon Ads have close similarities to Google Ads – with the basic structure being similar.

Businesses can use targeted keywords to display their ads in front of their target audience, boosting brand awareness, product views and sales.

Advertisers looking to boost their visibility on Amazon can pay for the best positions on Amazon SERPs to increase their product views and sales.  Advertisers are then charged when a shopper clicks on their ad. Ads can also be displayed on individual product pages.

Do Businesses Have to List a Product on Amazon to Deliver Ads?

For ad formats like sponsored products and brands, yes, a product listing is required. For display advertisements, no.

Display Ads are available to all businesses whether or not they sell products on Amazon. Customers can be directed do a custom landing page or even an external web page. Display Ads can appear on Amazon, Amazon owned / operated websites, third party websites and on Amazon devices.

But there are many styles of Amazon Ads, which we will detail in this guide.

How Much Do Amazon Ads Cost?

For most ad formats, as much or as little as you want to spend. Typical ad formats are cost-per-impressions (how many times your ad is viewed) or cost-per-click (so you pay Amazon only when your advertisement is clicked) and you decide your maximum cost per click as well as your ad spend and daily / monthly budget.

What Ad Formats Are Available on Amazon Ads?

1. Sponsored Products

Ads appear where customers will see them, like on the first page of Amazon search results and on single product pages.

Cost: Like Google Ads, ads are cost-per-click (CPC) so you only pay when someone clicks on the ad. Impressions / views are free of charge.

Amazon Ads

2. Sponsored Brands

Like Sponsored Products, these ads are displayed on search results and they focus on driving brand discovering and increasing brand awareness.

The ads feature:

  • – A brand logo
  • – Custom headline
  • – Up to three products

Like Sponsored products, ads are cost-per-click (CPC) so you only pay when someone clicks on the ad.

3. Stores

Advertise your brand and products with a multi-page Store. Creating a store on Amazon is actually free – they’re available for sellers enrolled in Amazon Brand Registry, vendors and agencies. You don’t need to advertise a product on Amazon to create a store.

To drive shoppers to your Amazon store, you can display ads on Amazon and implement marketing activities outside of Amazon too.

Cost: creating an Amazon Store is free of charge.

4. Display Ads

Share ads to customers on Amazon websites, apps and devices (and sites and apps that are not owned by Amazon). You don’t need to sell products on Amazon to invest in display ads – the landing page can be a product page, custom landing page or an external website.

Cost: display ads are cost-per-thousand impressions (CPM) and the prices depend on format and placement.

5. Video Ads

Deliver your ads on Amazon owned websites like IMDb and Twitch and across the web. Businesses don’t need to sell a product on Amazon to buy video ads. For videos ads that have a clickable link, the viewer can be taken to an Amazon product page, their own website or an external landing page.

Cost: varies based on video format and placement.

6. Custom Ads

Create tailor-made experiences like live events and digital placements. Any business with a product or brand to promote can invest in custom executions, they don’t need to sell products on Amazon.

Cost: custom ads require a guaranteed media spend and an Amazon Consultant will discuss your options– which are probably expensive.

7. Amazon DSP (Demand-Side Platform)

Best suited to advertisers who want to programmatically buy display and video ads at scale, Amazon DSP uses exclusive Amazon audiences to engage your ideal customer on amazon-owned sites (IMDb for example), Amazon Publisher Services and third-party exchanges.

Cost: to use the managed-service, Amazon usually requires a minimum spend of £10,000.

Can Google / Facebook Ads Strategies be Applied to Amazon?

The basic principles are the same, ensure your ad engages the right target audience, decide on a realistic budget and so on.

Strong marketing strategies that are successful for Google and Facebook ads may not be as effective with Amazon Ads. To make the most of Amazon’s platform, advertisers must learn about tools and strategies that will work for their audience and their intent.


Amazon Ads offers a selection of ad solutions to help all businesses discover, attract and engage their target audience on and off Amazon’s platform.

You can learn more about advertising on Amazon here.

Are you advertising on Amazon? You can let us know about your experience in the comments section below.