Amazon Sponsored Display Ads vs DSP: 13 things brands need to know

This image is part of an Amazon sponsored display ad that promotes the convenience and ease of shopping on Amazon.


Have you ever noticed the sponsored ads on Amazon

Ever wondered what they are and why they are there? If so, you’re not alone.

Many people are confused by these sponsored ads and what they mean. 

If you’re just starting to advertise your brand, it’s important you know about all the ad types Amazon has to offer such as Demand-Site Platform (DSP) and Amazon Sponsored Display Ads.

Amazon Sponsored Display Ads and Amazon DSP are two key options you should consider using to expand your advertising efforts both on and off the Amazon platform. 

Each ad type operates differently while offering distinct benefits.

To get the most out of each option, it’s important you understand the key differences and advantages that come with each type.

In this article, we will delve into what sponsored means on Amazon and explore two specific advertising formats: Amazon DSP and Amazon Sponsored Display.

What Does Sponsored Mean on Amazon?

When browsing Amazon, you may have come across products labeled as “sponsored.”

Essentially, “sponsored” refers to paid advertising that appears within Amazon’s search results, product listings, or other placements on the platform.

These sponsored products are typically shown to users based on their search queries or browsing history.

Sponsored ads are a great way for businesses to reach a larger audience and increase their sales.

Amazon’s sponsored ads are highly targeted, so they’re more likely to be seen by people who are interested in the products or services the advertiser offers.

13 Things You Need To Know About Amazon DSP and Amazon Sponsored Display Ads

ANS Performance: Amazon Sponsored Display Ads

1. DSP can be used for brands that do not sell directly on amazon

Amazon Sponsored Display ads is only available for brands on the Amazon platform. Amazon DSP however can send traffic to external websites, if that suits a seller’s goals.

In fact, DSP ads can be bought by anyone, not just Amazon sellers.

2. DSP is not for beginners

Amazon Canada & DSP on DSP requires a minimum monthly spend of $10,000. 

Therefore, this Amazon advertising option is not ideal for small brands or beginner e-commerce sellers.

For those that have the money and want to expand their advertising efforts, DSP offers advanced features that may help grow their brand in new and exciting ways.

3. Cost Structure differences

DSP uses a cost per mille (CPM) cost structure, thereby charging per 1000 impressions.

Alternatively, Amazon Sponsored Display ads uses a pay-per-click (PPC) cost structure.

CPM campaigns are generally best for generating brand exposure whereas PPC ads are designed to drive traffic to your products.

4. Advertising funnel considerations

Amazon DSP and Sponsored Display Amazon offer enough customization together to create a full-funnel advertising strategy that leverages both advertising types.

Essentially, you can cast a wider net with DSP by building brand awareness and then create more targeted campaigns that include calls to action with Sponsored Display Amazon.

Also, if your advertising strategy calls for it, you can retarget individuals using a combination of DSP and Amazon Sponsored Display ads to maximize your conversion potential.


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5. Amazon Sponsored Display Ads have limited customizability

Amazon Sponsored Display ads are automatically generated to deliver results.

That is, Amazon Sponsored Display ads does not offer any real opportunities for customization.

Consequently, however, this is a lower maintenance option for those that prefer simplicity when it comes to ad creation.

6. DSP offers full control of creatives

For those that want full control over their advertising creatives, Amazon DSP may be the better choice.

This programmatic advertising option provides ads that can be fully customized to encapsulate your brand’s vision.

7. DSP has a robust segmentation feature

DSP allows you to build custom targeting segments using Amazon’s own demographic and user data.

As such, Amazon DSP in Canada allows your advertising to be more precisely targeted so you can optimize your conversions.

8. Amazon Sponsored Display ads have three different targeting options

Below, we list the three targeting options for Amazon Sponsored Display ads and what they mean for your advertising.

a) Product Targeting

This style of advertising promotes your products among those that are similar to yours to accurately target people looking for those products.

b) Audiences: Views Remarketing

This type of paid Amazon Sponsored Display ads suits those looking to retarget high-interest audiences, i.e. the types of people your product is designed for.

c) Audiences: Interests

This option helps introduce your product to your target audience and build brand awareness.

9. On Channel & Off channel

Both Amazon Canada DSP and Amazon Sponsored Display ads can appear as on and off channel placements.

Conveniently, you can use both to generate traffic to your products from outside of the Amazon platform.

That said, however, DSP does offer more control over your placements and creatives.

10. DSP is a programmatic advertising program

Programmatic advertising is the use of automated technology for media buying.

This style of advertising is much more efficient and often much more effective than manual digital advertising.

Essentially, programmatic advertising uses data insights and algorithms to serve ads to the right user at the right time and price.

11. Amazon Ad Placement Differences 

Amazon sponsored display ads appear on product detail pages, review pages, search result pages, and on the app.

Amazon DSP ads purchased programmatically can be displayed across different platforms beyond Amazon. 

These include social media, other sites, video channels, streaming services, apps and more. 

DSP ads can also include custom display ads, promotional videos, audio advertisements and even dynamic e-commerce ads.

For example: 

An example of Amazon sponsored display ads.

12. Amazon DSP has a managed option

Amazon offers the option of assigning a team of DSP experts who will be responsible for managing your account and optimizing your advertising. 

However, this option doesn’t come cheap. To reap the benefits of managed Amazon sponsored display ads, you’ll be required to fork out a minimum monthly ad spend of $35,000.

Alternatively, you can connect with our team and we manage at a fraction of the cost. 

Because of its costs, managed Amazon Canada DSP is not a very accessible option for less established brands and businesses.

13. Learning Curve Differences

Running sponsored display Amazon ads are fairly easy to launch, manage and optimize through Vendor and Seller Central.

Amazon DSP on the other hand is much more complicated and typically demands the help of professional advertisers.

Luckily, there are many Amazon agencies that offer consultations with a DSP expert. 

An Amazon advertising agency like can help you launch DSP campaigns and learn how to get the most out of this advertising method.

And, although you may be able to learn Sponsored Display Amazon on your own, you can still benefit from expert advice when it comes to using this ad type as well.

With experience and expertise on their side, Sequence Commerce and other Amazon PPC advertising consultants can help you maximize your conversions from Sponsored Ads.

Are Amazon display ads and Amazon Sponsored Display Ads same?

Yes, Amazon Display Ads and Amazon Sponsored Display Ads are essentially the same thing.

The terms “Amazon Display Ads” and “Amazon Sponsored Display Ads” are often used interchangeably to refer to the advertising format provided by Amazon that allows sellers to promote their products through visually appealing display ads on various Amazon-owned websites and apps.

These display ads can appear on product detail pages, customer reviews, and even outside of Amazon on third-party websites and apps.

The goal of Amazon Sponsored Display ads is to increase product visibility, drive sales, and reach potential customers within the Amazon ecosystem.

Amazon Sponsored Display ads utilizes both automatic targeting and programmatic ad placements to deliver ads to relevant audiences.

It leverages Amazon’s vast customer data to identify potential customers based on their shopping behavior, interests, and preferences.

This allows sellers to effectively target and re-engage with customers who have previously viewed their products or similar items.

In summary, Amazon Display Ads and Amazon Sponsored Display Ads are two terms used interchangeably to describe the same advertising format offered by Amazon to promote products within its ecosystem using visually appealing display ads.


Both DSP ads and Amazon Sponsored Display ads can be effectively used to target your desired audience and drive traffic to your listings to grow your brand. 

However, each style is better suited for different tasks, with DSP being prohibitively expensive for many new sellers. That said, DSP offers improved customizability and programmatic algorithms to help you see more success with your campaigns. 

Whether you choose Amazon sponsored display ads, Amazon DSP ads, or a combination of both, you’ll benefit from hiring an amazon agency or marketing consultant to get your advertising efforts off the ground. 

With the help of experienced advertising specialists, you’ll see the results you desire no matter what ad type you prefer. 


Questions About

Amazon Sponsored Display Ads

Are Amazon sponsored display ads trustworthy?

If you know What does sponsored mean on Amazon, you also know Sponsored ads on Amazon go through a screening process to ensure they meet certain criteria and comply with Amazon’s policies. 


However, it’s important for buyers to evaluate the product and seller information, including ratings, reviews, and descriptions, to make an informed purchasing decision.

How does sponsored ads work on Amazon?

Before knowing how sponsored display amazon works, you should know What does sponsored mean on Amazon.


Sellers can bid on relevant keywords to increase the visibility of their products. 

When a user searches for a specific keyword, the sponsored products that match or relate to that keyword are displayed, often at the top of the search results or on product detail pages. 

What are the benefits of using Amazon Sponsored Display ads?

Amazon Sponsored Display ads offers several benefits for sellers, including increased product visibility, targeted advertising to relevant audiences, the opportunity for retargeting customers who have viewed their products, and the ability to create brand awareness beyond the Amazon platform.

How are ads targeted in Amazon Sponsored Display?

Sponsored Display Amazon uses automated targeting based on customer data to determine the audience for the ads. It analyzes customers’ shopping behavior, interests, and browsing history to identify individuals who are likely to be interested in the advertised products.

Can sellers track the performance of their Amazon Sponsored Display ads?

Yes, sellers can track the performance of their Amazon Sponsored Display ads using Amazon Advertising’s reporting tools. They can monitor metrics such as impressions, clicks, conversions, and advertising spend to assess the effectiveness of their campaigns.

How are costs determined for Amazon Sponsored Display?

Amazon Sponsored Display operates on a cost-per-click (CPC) model. Sellers are charged when a user clicks on their sponsored display Amazon ad. The cost per click is determined by factors such as bid amount, competition, and the relevance of the ad to the target audience. 

Can sellers control where their Amazon Sponsored Display ads appear?

With Amazon Sponsored Display ads, sellers have some control over where their ads appear, but not complete control.

The ad placements are determined by Amazon’s algorithm and the targeting options chosen by the seller. Sellers can specify the targeting options, such as product targeting or audience targeting, to reach their desired audience.

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