emplicit 2023 amazon predictions illustration

“Evolve or die.”

Evolve or die was the candid advice offered by Amazon Vice President and Chief Technology Officer Werner Vogels during his keynote speech at Amazon Web Services re:Invent 2022. He was referring to SimSpace Weaver, a system allowing customers to perform large-scale and complex spatial simulations that adjust to real-life systems and make sense of available data.

Vogels discussing one of Amazon’s latest innovations got Emplicit thinking about how to prepare for the marketplace’s next evolution. Dissecting current trends and gauging what’s in store for sellers and customers is part of our day-to-day duties. With 2023 just around the corner, our focus has honed in on what Amazon.com could introduce in the new year.

We recently held a think tank session to share and dissect our predictions for 2023 so our clients can stay ahead of the curve and take early advantage of new Amazon developments next year and beyond.

Below you’ll find 10 of the most notable predictions, plus the Emplicit team member (and their position) who brought the idea to the table – more accurately, the Zoom meeting.


1. Premium A+ content will no longer be restricted

Seb Lyner, VP Commercial Director

Previously sellers had to be willing to stump up $250k-$500k a year or receive a rare invite, to get access to Amazon’s Premium A+ content, also known as A++ content, which includes 17 additional premium modules to choose from and allows 7 content slots. Then in 2022 Amazon offered certain Premium A+ content modules for free on a promotional basis to Brand Registry sellers who have A+ content across all ASINs or had 15 A+ content projects approved in the last 12 months. Amazon also began to provide free access to members of the Amazon Launchpad program.

Amazon’s willingness to open up access to Premium A+ content to certain sellers has been accompanied by an expansion of regular A+ content. This is logical, because Amazon obviously wants all sellers to have access to features and functions which increase sales. The prediction is that Amazon will take the plunge and give all sellers access to Premium A+ content in 2023.

A+ content manager screenshot


2. Renewed focus on influencers & affiliates

Paula Lambert, Director of Account Management

In December 2022 Amazon confirmed its commitment to influencers and affiliates by launching Amazon Inspire. This tool allows Amazon app users to explore products and shop with a TikTok-like feed of short-form video and images based on content created by influencers and brands.

Prior to this Amazon launched Creator Connections, which connects sellers to influencers, which is designed to expand their influencer and affiliate programs. The emergence of Amazon Associates as a replacement for the previously separate Amazon Affiliates and Amazon Influencer programs indicates that Amazon are on top of the convergence of influencers and affiliates.

In 2023 commissions are likely to be increased, whether it’s back to pre-pandemic levels we’ll have to see, but influencers and affiliates are definitely top of mind for Amazon and viewed as a valuable source of sales traffic as we head into the New Year.


3. Social shopping

Nicole Medeck, Director of Content

There were 4.74 billion social media users as of October 2022. That’s 59.3% of the world’s population. On average users spend nearly 2.5 hours on social media every day.

Amazon is aware of this, hence launching Inspire, a TikTok-like shopping feature for the Amazon app in December 2022. The prediction is that Amazon will be implementing more social shopping methods with social networks next year.

Keep an eye out for them in your feeds.

amazon inspire screenshot


4. A+ content indexed by Google

Seb Lyner, VP Commercial Director

The mere mention of all A+ content (not just images / image descriptions) indexed by Google has SEO nerds like me licking their lips.

The push for brands to drive off-Amazon traffic to Amazon to combat competition from other marketplaces and DTC ecommerce websites could lead to the marketplace giant actively encouraging Google to index A+ Content. (Google is already including certain structured data such as ratings, price, and availability to provide ‘rich’ organic search results, without Amazon even using the review snippet schema data.)

If this comes to fruition, Amazon listings’ exposure in organic SERPs will significantly increase, so if you’re sensible, you are already using live text and good meta data in your A+ content.


5. Attribution and incentives for external traffic

Adam Weiler, CEO

Incentivizing more publishers, affiliates, and influencers could increase Amazon’s traffic. That’s why we could see Amazon build on Business Referral Bonus (BRB), a program that gives 10% of a sale back to the advertiser responsible for driving external traffic to Amazon.

But what does “build on” BRB mean? Amazon’s working on expanding their DSP ad platform. Could they also create a new ad platform?

That remains to be seen.

amazon brand referral bonus how applied to your account


6. Improved retargeting

Emily Lindahl, Director of Operations

Shoppers who stay on Amazon place more orders on Amazon.

Amazon improving retargeting could include ramping up customer engagement to increase orders. Emplicit has experience with Amazon’s customer engagement tools: email marketing. Currently sending a certain amount of emails in a specified timeframe to a brand’s followers will get you access to 3 or more retargeting tools. We believe more will be available in 2023 plus maybe the ability to target specific groups of people.


7. Voice shopping limited

Paula Lambert, Director of Account Management

The Amazon Alexa voice assistant unit was one of the divisions hit the hardest when Amazon eliminated approximately 10,000 jobs. Laying off so many employees in this division indicates Amazon could pull back on Alexa features, like voice shopping.

While this is more about what Amazon will stop doing in 2023 than what it will add, one of Amazon’s Leadership Principles is Bias for Action, so if the investment is not generating the sales, then expect them to move to testing the next thing swiftly and determinedly. (Probably not shopping via the Metaverse though!)


8. Enhanced & interactive imagery

Jeff Gayas, Senior Graphic Designer

A++ Content might be one of multiple additions to Seller Central in 2023.

Augmented Reality, which allows you to see products in your home before making a purchase, and 360 imagery are only for sellers on Vendor Central, but all sellers may be able to use both starting next year.

This prediction is based on the fact that Amazon always ends up giving everyone access to any features of functionality which are demonstrated to increase sales, as long as the technological challenges don’t outweigh the benefits.

amazon augmented reality imagery A+ content


9. Vendor Central and Seller Central merge

Dominique Hernandez, Director of Logistics

Life’s already complicated, so why not make it simpler by merging Vendor Central and Seller Central?

The differences in features and functionality provided by the two platforms have been converging to the point where they are now minimal. Combining them creates a single platform and single data set for Amazon to maintain – each level of access would simply be field within the account data.

Sellers wouldn’t feel a significant impact, and Vendor Central-level access would still provide 1P sellers with certain features unavailable to 3P sellers.


10. Buy With Prime expanded

Adam Weiler, CEO

DTC ecommerce sellers could lean on Amazon Prime’s benefits even more in 2023.

Buy With Prime has a widget brands can stick on their ecommerce site. It allows customers to purchase products from their own DTC website but get the Prime experience, including free and fast shipping, customer service, easy returns, etc. This relieves brands of having to worry about logistics and other potential risks.

2023 looks set to hold a key focus on Buy With Prime as Amazon has something like 30 open positions for reps to promote the service to agencies and ecommerce merchants. This could generate huge revenue as Amazon steal ground from the other payment gateways such as Stripe, Braintree, Square, Authorize.net, etc. Amazon could develop and launch extensions or add-ons so sellers can more easily add Buy With Prime to their ecommerce platforms.

Maybe they’ll enable Buy With Prime on social media sites, maybe even on Google?!


2023 update and 2024 predictions

We’ll be tracking progress against these predictions, so check back in December 2023 to see where we were right and where Amazon did things we didn’t envisage. We’ll be making our predictions for Amazon in 2024 at that time too.

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