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Did the FTC Uncover Amazon’s Secret Algorithm?

Disclaimer: This blog initially served as a newsletter for informational purposes to our subscribers. The content provided in this blog/newsletter is based on news and information at the time of writing (October 5 2023). This article may also contain affiliate links that will allow us to earn commissions without any extra cost to you. Read our full disclosure here.

Have you heard of Project Nessie? Apparently, it’s been helping Amazon for years to create an advantage for its own products.

Here’s what the FTC has to say.


Meet Us In Hong Kong!

If you’re also going to Guangzhou for the Canton Fair, why don’t you stop by Hong Kong to say hi in person?

We’re planning a 3-hour dinner cruise at Victoria Harbour in Hong Kong this October 17, and you’re invited! It’s our time to see each other in person and talk about anything and everything that happened in e-commerce as well as what’s yet to come.

It’s just $59 for the dinner (but EcomCrew Premium members can join for free).

Let’s save you a seat.


Amazon Will Have a New Salesperson—Of Course, It’s AI

Not all customers like having a salesperson following them around to address their every need. But they might react differently when the shopping is done online.

Amazon’s VP of Amazon Search and Alexa Shopping, Joseph Shirosh, is reportedly suggesting a major AI revamp that would allow buyers to interact with the platform in a more conversational manner as they’re picking out which products to buy.

photo of person opening the Amazon app
Amazon continues to use AI to improve the customer experience.

Codenamed Project Nile, the new technology is expected to provide a more personalized experience to Amazon customers. Buyers will be able to ask for additional information about the product they’re looking for as well as recommendations.

This is definitely something that brand owners and marketers should watch out for. But since this is Amazon’s own AI, we can’t help but wonder how biased it will be towards recommending its own products to potential buyers.

Amazon Top Terms

Let's take a dive into the last two weeks and explore the Amazon top 10 search terms that have surged in popularity from September 17 to September 30. Get ready to discover the keywords that are raking in the profits on Amazon!

In this week's Amazon top 10 terms, the “Sewing machines clearance prime” has become a hot favorite, landing at #6 with a massive increase in sales—from 268 units per day to 402 units per day in the last two weeks.

This term is all the rage because Prime Day is around the corner. Related products include rocking big discounts, likely contributing to the surging trend.

Learn the ropes on snagging freebies and discounts as we spill the secrets of becoming an Amazon product tester in our article “How to Become an Amazon Product Tester and Get Freebies and Discounts.

Using Mailchimp? It Has New E-Commerce Features.

Mailchimp has recently announced its partnership with site-builder Wix. With the partnership, the company introduced new marketing features that are just in time for the holidays.

Mailchimp clients who use Wix will be able to sync their customer data on the email marketing platform. It also features new AI tools to help make marketing materials more personalized, noting that about 71% of customers are more likely to purchase from brands that send personalized emails.

The new features include integration with Buy with Prime and advanced AI segmentation. This means that marketers can segment buyers according to their behaviors from Buy with Prime, e.g., clicked the link, bought the product, performed a search. They can then create prompts such as “send to people who are most likely to book a class” and the AI will generate a list.

In addition to easier segmentation, Mailchimp users can also generate emails that use the brand’s voice. US-based users can also automate SMS campaigns and respond directly from their Mailchimp inbox for a more seamless customer experience.


Geared for peak season. As the holidays near, Walmart is hopeful that its own third-party sellers will attract more buyers from Amazon.

Is Anthropic the next big thing? Just days after Amazon announced its additional investment in the AI company, Anthropic is now in talks about raising another $2 billion in new funding from Google.

No surcharges. The US Postal Service announced it will not levy surcharges this holiday season.


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