Compared with previous ads appearing on search results and product pages, this time testing pop-up ads on its mobile App is a step further. The pop-up window advertisement occupies a large part of the product page, forcing users to click on Amazon's cheaper products or give up before continuing shopping.
For example, when users use Amazon App to search for AAA batteries, the first link is a product sponsored by Energizer Holdings. But when the user clicks on the product link, a pop-up window appears to offer the lower-priced Amazon Basics AAA battery.
The test ended last week, according to people familiar with the matter. But this shows that Amazon has strong control over major brands on its platform. To provide the best choice at the lowest price, Amazon has created more than 100 brands, ranging from batteries and garbage bags to nutritional supplements and furniture.
Amazon said the pop-up window is not an advertisement, but a test of a function that can help consumers find cheaper alternatives. What's more, Amazon's retail business, not its advertising business, tested this feature.