Google Unveils Initiative To Compete More Effectively With Amazon E-Commerce

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Google is getting serious about competing with Amazon in online shopping — just as it did in 2013, 2014, 2017 and 2019.

According to The New York Times, on Thursday Google announced that it would “take steps to bring more sellers and products onto its shopping site by waiving sales commissions and allowing retailers to use popular third-party payment and order management services like Shopify instead of the company’s own systems.”

“In 2020, as the coronavirus pandemic continues to grip America, the push to create an online shopping marketplace to compete with Amazon has taken on new urgency as consumers are avoiding stores and turning to the internet to fill more of their shopping needs,” The Times reported. “More consumers in the United States are turning first to Amazon to find products that they plan to purchase. This has allowed Amazon to build a rapidly growing advertising business, which is a threat to Google’s main financial engine.”

This year, Google “brought in Bill Ready, a former executive at PayPal, to be its president of commerce and to compete more successfully with Amazon,” the report added. In April, Google announced that it would “allow anyone to list products for free on its shopping site, reversing its previous policy of requiring sellers to buy an ad for products to appear.” Those free listings will appear on Google’s search results. The Times wrote that by “eliminating the cost of listing and selling products, Google aims to make it more appealing for retailers to put products in front of the search engine’s enormous user base.”

“We want to make sure selling online is easy and inexpensive,” said Ready. “Consumers benefit from a diverse and thriving ecosystem of sellers...There is no one player that can serve all the needs of consumers.”

Google’s new initiative is expected to start immediately in the US “before rolling out to other countries this year,” the report concluded.

Read the full report here.

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