Google ads Amazon-style products to search results – in a big revenue grab

An interesting update by Google which seems directly targeted at Amazon. These new Product Ads from Google will compete with Amazon’s commission model, and may come down to who has the better search.

With billions of dollars in revenue the stakes…

 

In the early days of Google, users would type in a query, we’d return ten blue links, and they’d move on happy. Today people want more. When searching for great local restaurants, people want places to eat right there on the results page, not another click or two away. It’s the same with hotels, flight options, directions and shopping.

Today we’re announcing a new initiative to improve our shopping experience over time–so that shoppers (your customers) can easily research purchases, compare different products, their features and prices, and then connect directly with merchants to make their purchase.

First, we are starting to transition Google Product Search in the U.S. to a purely commercial model built on Product Listing Ads. This new product discovery experience will be called Google Shopping and the transition will be complete this fall.

Ranking in Google Shopping, when the full transition is complete this fall, will be based on a combination of relevance and bid price–just like Product Listing Ads today.

In addition, merchants who want to stand out from the crowd can choose to participate in our new Google Trusted Stores program. Google Trusted Stores is a badge for e-commerce sites which gives users background on merchants—whatever their size—including ratings for on-time shipping and customer service. Google stands behind merchants that have earned the Google Trusted Stores badge with a $1,000 lifetime purchase protection guarantee per shopper.

Second, starting today we’ve also begun to experiment with some new commercial formats on Google.com that will make it easier for users to find and compare different products. These include larger product images that give shoppers a better sense of what is available and also the ability to refine a search by brand or product type.

For example, below is  what stargazers could see on Google.com when searching for [telescopes], or for a specific product, such as [Celestron CPC 800].

 

Continue reading Google ads Amazon-style products to search results – in a big revenue grab

The digital divide – newspapers are completely lost

Online advertising is booming. Already a $32 billion business, advertisers are expected to spend a full $62 billion online in 2016. But news publishers are not poised to cash in on the growth, a report released Monday by the Pew Research Center suggests.

The problem? News publishers’ online advertising products simply aren’t competitive. Most tend to depend on static, un-targeted banner advertisements, making their products less desirable than the highly targeted advertisements offered by the likes of Facebook and Google.

Among the other findings:

  • 21% of ads on an online news site are for the news organization’s own products.
  • By category, the financial industry is the largest spender in online news advertising (18%), followed by cosmetics and toiletries (5%).
  • Most ads are static banner ads. Rich media and video ads are rare.
  • Few legacy print customers are moving to digital

via Mashable

A detailed study that shows newspapers losing $7 from print for every digital $1, without even a sense of how they are addressing a key aspect of that transition. It’s an unfortunate vacuum.

One exec bluntly states, “There’s no doubt we’re going out of business right now.”

via paidContent

 

This unfortunate state of affairs is costing the newspapers $25 billion this year and success stories are rare. One success I was able to find comes the The Atlantic magazine, a much smaller company pulling in $18 million in advertising.