Consumer-focused shopping sites like The New York Times’ Wirecutter and BuzzFeed’s shopping channel provide valuable traffic for Amazon. Now, the tech giant wants to offer some of its biggest publishing partners money to expand their brands internationally, reports Recode.
With the current model, Amazon pays a publisher each time a shopper clicks on an affiliate link embedded on a publisher’s site and buys something from Amazon. The new model would see Amazon providing publishers with money upfront to expand reach and readership.
Sources told Recode that Amazon has floated several deals to boost publishers’ international sites or expand into new markets. While companies like Facebook, Google and Twitter have partnered with publishers previously, offering pay in advance of sponsored videos and other content, hasn't been tested.
Nieman Lab notes The Wirecutter is gaining international subscribers faster than U.S. subscribers, with Australia, Canada and the UK comprising its largest international markets. Those markets, the outlet recognizes, would be ideal for creating new buying guides without the additional language barrier other locations could present.
What would the parameters of a deal be?
Recode asks, will Amazon expect to paid back through clicks and purchases by shoppers? Nieman Lab questions the ethics of a deepened Amazon-publisher partnership, asking if publishers will be at liberty to recommend the best prices for an item, even if that price does not take a customer to Amazon’s site.
However, Nieman Lab states of the proposed deal: “This would seem to be a relatively rare instance of the goals of a platform actually aligning with the goals of a publisher."