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Amazon Prime Day Once Again Drives Up Google Impressions

Last year Amazon created the first ever Prime Day, a sales ‘holiday’ meant to offer users with paid Amazon Prime subscriptions the chance to purchase some products at discounts from the normal Amazon price.

The first iteration came with complaints from customers over the products listed for sale and the quantities available, as well as copycat sales holidays from big competitors like Best Buy and Walmart. Despite the complaints and competition, however, Amazon reported more items sold than on the previous year’s Black Friday.

Prime Day also impacted the larger online advertising ecosystem, sending Google non-brand impressions for Merkle e-commerce advertisers soaring while at the same time CTR decreased.

So how did this year’s Prime Day end up impacting Google advertisers?

Google Impressions Up and CTR Down Once Again

Taking a look at Prime Day 2016 Google performance for Merkle advertisers, we again find that non-brand impressions went up on Prime Day while at the same time CTR fell.

Much of this increase can be attributed to ads showing directly on Amazon.com, which is a Google search partner and features numbered text ad listing on its site.

And indeed, the share of Google non-brand text ad impressions coming from the search partners increased sharply on Prime Day.

Regardless, with the decline in CTR, advertiser traffic remained relatively unchanged through Prime Day compared to the day before. Likewise, conversion rate remained about the same.


Amazon is a big deal in the ecommerce space (understatement of the year?). As such, it makes sense that their major initiatives have a real impact on the rest of the online retail ecosystem.

In recent years we’ve also seen them showing at higher positions and more often on the Google search results page with text ads in advertisers’ Auction Insights reports, which is likely also steadily impacting advertiser performance.

Given Amazon's status as a Google search partner, we can likely look forward to increased Google impressions and lower overall CTR anytime the ecommerce giant accounts for a greater share of internet traffic than normal.