E-Commerce Sites Exploring Selling Ad Space
By Tom Ryan
While Amazon.com is apparently testing running display advertisements
on its website, Backcountry.com, a leading e-tailer of outdoor products, has
formally launched a program offering advertising space available on its websites.
a subsidiary of Liberty Media Corp., said the program will be available first
to Backcountry.com’s vendors and partners, but will open it up to "customer
complementary" advertisers shortly. The company
said the program offers exposure opportunities to Backcountry.com’s one to
four million unique monthly visitors who engage in 10 to 35 million page views
per month. It will also allow advertisers to reach its
niche audience of hardcore outdoor enthusiasts.
"Most people still use the internet as it was originally intended: a
research medium," said Dustin Robertson, Backcountry.com’s chief marketing
officer, in a statement. "Having customer-complementary ads on our sites
can enhance the customer’s shopping experience as well as provide the customer
with more brand and product information opportunities while they are in their
Advertisers can buy inventory available on a navigation
level basis (e.g., Men’s Clothing, Women’s Clothing, Hiking) as well as on
all Product Detail Pages. Potential advertisers will also have the ability
to send traffic to any destination URL they choose; from their own site, to
a smaller retailer or to a custom campaign.
"We would much rather have our customers exit to a vendor site to learn
more about the products they are researching than go anywhere else," said
Meanwhile, on Amazon.com, the bottom of the front page on Tuesday
afternoon showed an ad for ING Direct with a click-through link to the bank’s
website. Clicking on the words "ad feedback" underneath the advertisement
brought up a survey asking clickers two questions: "How relevant is this
ad?" and "How
appropriate is this ad for Amazon?"
A link to a page, "About Amazon’s
Advertising Program," included
the explanation, "As you’ve noticed, Amazon.com has recently started
incorporating display advertising on some of our pages. At Amazon, our ultimate
priority is to ensure that your shopping experience is a good one. When companies
place ads on Amazon we generate additional revenue, which allows us to offer
lower prices to you, something we are dedicated to doing in every way we can.
All 3rd party advertisements will always be clearly labeled as such."
Discussion Question: What do you think of e-commerce sites selling display
advertising space? Will consumers accept the rationale that ads enhance their
- Backcountry.com Launches Advertising Sales Program – Backcountry.com
- About Amazon’s Advertising Program – Amazon.com