Amazon says it uses aggregated seller data to help business

November 20, 2019 10:00
Amazon claims that its teams do not use individual seller data to launch, source or price private label products. Photo: Reuters

Amazon uses "aggregated data" from sellers in its third-party marketplace to improve its overall business, the online retailer said in response to a congressional antitrust probe.

Such data, also culled from public sources and Amazon’s first-party sales, is available to the company’s retail and private brand teams, the company said in an Oct. 11 document released by the US House of Representatives Judiciary Committee on Tuesday, Reuters reports.

Data on individual sellers is not used to improve Amazon’s business, the company said, adding that its teams do not use seller data to launch, source or price private label products, which number about 158,000.

The comments came as the US congressional panel is investigating potential breaches of antitrust law by big technology companies.

The e-commerce behemoth said use of public and aggregated sales data to spot in-demand products is standard practice in retailing.

Amazon also said it may ask third-party merchants to lower prices on when it finds the sellers asking for less on a competing website.

Asked how it ranks shopping results on its website, Amazon said its algorithm does not consider factors such as whether it has a competing private label brand, if a competing third-party seller has purchased ads, or if the seller is enrolled in Amazon’s logistics program.

It instead considers a product’s availability, price and how frequently it was purchased.

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