Google and Intuit Announce Major SME/Local Search Partnership

I’ve written a long post at Search Engine Watch. Basically, Google AdWords and other Google applications are being embedded directly in the new (2007) edition of QuickBooks. Intuit has also acquired StepUp (for $60m according to Reuters).

Google has been working directly and indirectly with channel partners to acquire small business advertisers. Many of those partners are yellow pages publishers. But consider that the U.S. yellow pages industry has approximately 3.2 million advertisers in total. QuickBooks has 3.7 million active users and Quicken another 3 million (not all of whom are small businesses obviously). But you get the idea: Instantly Google gets access – through a trusted third party (Intuit) — to a huge installed base of potential advertisers.

Although everything remains to be seen, this is a big deal in my view.

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Here’s the press release. Michael Arrington offers a largely negative assessment of the partnership.

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7 Responses to “Google and Intuit Announce Major SME/Local Search Partnership”

  1. Ben Says:

    While this is a great exit for StepUp at a great stepup (i could not resist), the real story here is the Intuit/Google deal. Most people who saw StepUp saw it as a powerful product with a fundamental issue on merchant acquisition. Intuit may have solved that problem for them.

    Intuit has one of if not the most interesting channel into the small business community out there.

    Thier work with the payroll and bookkeeping channels has created a very unique opportunity for additional services to be sold. It is not clear that this will be as effective for selling advertising as it is for Quickbooks plugsin or payroll processing, etc but it is significant.

    It continue to show Google innovation in expanding thier base. The recent salesforce.com efforts are another example of this.

  2. Google books Intuit’s customer base » Small Business SEM Says:

    […] Quickbooks, you surely know, is the accounting software of choice for millions of people, most of whom are small business owners. Google gains direct access to an audience that, to a large degree, hasn’t heavily adopted AdWords, Local Search Marketing, etc. The partnership announced today could help open the floodgates of PPC and local search adoption by small businesses. Greg Sterling says “this is a big deal.” Erick Schonfeld says “this could be massive.” Michael Arrington is less impressed. […]

  3. Apogee Weblog Says:

    Google AdWords for Intuit Quickbooks Users

    This partnership between Google and Intuit is another clever move by Google. Not so sure it\’s good for small businesses. That depends on…

  4. AhmedF Says:

    So umm – what about Zipingo?

  5. Google to Become a Web Host? « Screenwerk Says:

    […] Many of the articles that discussed the Intuit relationship said that Google would host landing pages for businesses that didn’t have sites (a number that is elusive but probably in the range of 7-9 million). […]

  6. Search Engine Journal » Web Hosting by Google? Says:

    […] For slightly different reasons, in June of last year I argued that Google ought to acquire a small business webhosting company. My argument was mostly about the sales channel that it would acquire (sort of a smaller-scale version of what the company just did with Intuit). But it makes sense to me on several levels. Yahoo! is the largest small business webhost. Microsoft also offers hosting services for small businesses. […]

  7. SingleFeed Simplifies Shopping for Small Merchants « Screenwerk Says:

    […] SingleFeed is consistent with online marketing simplification programs going on across the Internet for service businesses and, to a lesser degree, product sellers. Most recently Google announced a deal with Intuit (which acquired StepUp) that will enable QuickBooks users to deliver their product inventories to Google. […]

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