I just saw today that Amazon removed the total number of reviews from the search results (except for some sponsored ads) and replaced it with the rating + the percentage of 5-star reviews. They also display the number of units sold in the past month for some listings.
I believe this change will:
1 – Make recent sales history and sales velocity more important than long-term history on Amazon.
2 – Make sellers focus on product quality to maximize 5-star reviews, rather than focusing mostly on the total number of reviews.
3 – Make it more difficult to distinguish organic results and sponsored ads, while also making advertising even more competitive.
It looks like Amazon keeps focusing more on ad revenues; many changes we saw in the last two years are enticing sellers to spend more on advertising. I read that they may hit $10B in 2023 in ad revenues, and it is clear that ad revenues are a key piece of Amazon’s strategy.