Amazon doesn’t disclose advertising revenues in its quarterly earnings reports. It bundles the ad group into an “Other” category, which consists of advertising and analytics services.
But even without a specific number, it’s clear that Amazon’s advertising business is both massive and growing fast.
Amazon’s Other category earned more than $7.9 billion in Q2, up by 87% year-over-year, the company reported on Thursday. Most of that revenue comes from ad sales. Advertising across the internet took a hit in Q2 2020, but Amazon’s ad business has grown by more than $1 billion since Q1 of this year alone.
For comparison’s sake, LinkedIn and Twitter each cleared more than $3 billion in ad revenue in 2020, with Snapchat earning about $2.5 billion and Pinterest $1.7 billion. And those are annual earnings. In Q2 this year alone, Amazon added more than $3 billion in ad revenue, and its quarterly total could be more than $7 billion.
The factors driving Amazon’s ads business are also still rocketing upward. The ecommerce giant added 50 million new Prime subscribers worldwide in the past 18 months, according to CFO Brian Olsavsky. Advertising services have also proven an important onboarding mechanism for small and mid-size advertisers in particular, he said. And Amazon Prime signed the National Football League, the English Premier League and major tennis tournaments to new streaming broadcast deals starting in the next year, expanding the company’s addressable audience for advertising.
Amazon’s streaming TV ads across Fire TV channels and its owned properties, plus Twitch streaming ads, now reach 120 million monthly viewers in the United States, up by almost a quarter in the past year.
“Advertising is part of our flywheel,” Olsavsky said. “We have traffic coming in for the consumer business. And if we do a good job with advertising, we’ll make it an additive experience for our customers, our sellers and our vendors.”