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The Verge reports that while Amazon is often criticized for cluttering up its pages with advertising, often making it hard for shoppers to find the item for which they were searching because there are so many ads for competitors' products, there is one company that seems to have avoided the problem.


According to the story, "Apple struck a deal with Amazon to strip competitors’ ads off of pages for iPhones, iPads MacBooks, and its other products … The agreement makes search results and product pages for Apple devices cleaner than those of competitors.

"While Amazon still lists competing products on search result pages for Apple products, it limits the ads it sticks above, below, and between results. For example, when you search for an iPhone 15 on Amazon, you’ll only see an Apple product in a banner at the top of the page along with another ad banner at the very bottom. Meanwhile, searches for competing devices, like the Samsung Galaxy S23, surface ads for other products and services throughout the results page."

The Verge writes that " Amazon cuts down on the ads for Apple’s product pages as well. Instead of advertising 'products related to this item' and items rated '4 stars and above,' the pages for Apple products are relatively ad-free. The same can’t be said for product pages from companies like Samsung, which are often stuffed with recommended items from other brands lower down the page."

The agreement between Apple and Amazon dates back to 2018, and The Verge notes that "it’s still not clear if Apple compensates Amazon for the ad space it’s hogging — and if so, how much."

KC's View:

This essentially confirms that Amazon is willing to cheapen the customer experience in certain cases, and improve it in others.  Which is fine - retailers make these kinds of decisions all the time - except for a company that continues to describe itself as customer-obsessed.  (Maybe it needs to add a clarified.  Like, "often customer-obsessed."  Or "sometimes customer-obsessed.")

I'm still not sure that this rises to the level of an offense that requires Federal Trade Commission (FTC) intervention.  But we'll see how it plays out.