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Amazon could soon sell ad space on other sites

(Image credit: Image Credit: Ken Wolter / Shutterstock)

Amazon (opens in new tab) is pushing further into the digital-advertising market with a new display ad tool that rivals Google and Criteo.

The tool allows merchants that sell items on its online marketplace to purchase ad spots that will follow shoppers around the web to entice them to come back to the site. According to people familiar with the company's plans, Amazon is currently inviting select merchants to test out the new ads later this month.

Sellers using the new tool will be able to bid on ads that appear on other websites besides Amazon which will help them extend their reach online. However, the merchants will only have to pay Amazon after customers click on their ads (opens in new tab)

Amazon will be able to help merchants target shoppers that have viewed either their products or similar ones on its site.  It is still unclear as to which sites or apps will carry the new ads placed by the US e-commerce giant. 

Following the news, Criteo (opens in new tab) shares dropped by seven percent in New York though Alphabet shares were little changed. 

Last year Amazon's ad business generated $1.7bn in revenue while its rival, Google brought in $95bn from ads. Facebook on the other hand took in $40bn from ads in 2017. 

We will likely hear more from Amazon once its new ad campaign exits the invitation only stage and its new ads begin appearing online. 

Image Credit: Ken Wolter / Shutterstock  

After getting his start at ITProPortal and then working with the TechRadar Pro team for the last several years, Anthony is now the security and networking editor at Tom’s Guide where he covers everything from data breaches to how to cover your whole home or business with Wi-Fi. When not writing, you can find him tinkering with PCs and game consoles, managing cables and upgrading his smart home.