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Google Refreshes Efforts to Increase Share of Online Shopping Market

21 June 2019 - 10:37 by Graham Miller

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While most people who want to carry out safe shopping online will start with a search on Google, this is usually the first step in a journey that will see consumers ending up on specific retailer websites.

Google wants to change this and encourage more people to spend their cash through its own platform rather than clicking through to a separate service operated by a third party.

Emarketer reports that Google Shopping has been updated to further these efforts, with the revised platform now amalgamating several other solutions which had previously been separated. This include Google Express, a standalone marketplace which is now included under the wider Google Shopping umbrella to create a relatively seamless user experience.

Google’s biggest competitor in this sector is obviously Amazon, both in its native US and in the UK. Furthermore, the fact that Amazon is muscling in on the digital marketing niche that Google has been plumbing so fruitfully for the past couple of decades should be further cause for a mounting rivalry between the two corporations.

Google Shopping now offers a cross-device e-commerce basket to which users can add products when they encounter them and then revisit these additions on any system that they are signed into. This factors in not only Google’s standard search engine but also the likes of YouTube.

Part of the challenge facing Google is that Amazon’s shopping site is unambiguous in what it offers: namely a place for people to find and buy products. Meanwhile, Google’s functions are far more varied and nebulous, since it is a hub for all information - not just for product searches and transactions.

The upshot is that Amazon still gives brand partners more incentive to work with it because of the focused nature of its site. Google faces an uphill struggle to achieve something similar.