Whazzup with Shopping at Google?


The speculation is on about the future of shopping at Google, triggered by recent comments by a Googler at the Professional eBay Sellers Alliance Summit last week. Here’s Danny Sullivan’s review of the histories of Froogle and Google Base and here’s Brian Smith’s (Comparison Engines) discussion of Google Base and the upcoming holiday shopping season.

Here’s what the Google speaker said at the conference according to Bear Stearns analyst Robert Peck who was there:

When people search for products on Google.com, the system will present them with another search box so that they can refine their query, wrote Bear Stearns analysts in a note published on Friday.

After people refine their query, Google takes them to a second page populated with product results from the Google Base listings service, wrote the analysts, who attended the Google official’s presentation.

“Ranking will be determined by the attributes that the sellers listed for the product as well as by relevancy,” the analysts wrote.

What it appears is going on is that Base is now the product/feed entry point, which has always been Google’s intent for Base (a universal content upload mechanism). The “second search box” is consistent with what Google has been doing for some time with other vertical or other specialized content. Often you’ll get “onebox” results and/or a new set of search fields depending on the query (See, e.g., travel, cars).

What Google appears to be universally doing (and for some time now) is threading “vertical” content into search results (local, products, news, movies, etc.) followed by a more specialized environment built around the content type. Co-op also plays into this “verticalization” strategy.

I’ve written previously about what I think that Google can/should do with shopping. The question is not whether Google will have “product search” or shopping but what will it look like precisely and what features it will offer.

I’m eager to see.


Google took the search box off Base, but you can find an older version of the site with the box here.


One Response to “Whazzup with Shopping at Google?”

  1. Son of Froogle: Google « Screenwerk Says:

    […] Many have been blogging about screenshots (first discovered by Garrett Rogers) that reveal the likely replacement for Froogle, which was pulled from the links above the Google search box, is a more product-savvy Google itself. […]

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