• http://www.michael-martinez.com/ Michael Martinez

    I think the most serious practice in need of inspection and discussion is Google’s creation of a marketplace that Google subsequently leverages to its own advantage. That is probably the most legitimate business complaint. Case in point, Google made it possible for comparison shopping sites to build a lot of traffic (and revenues) through search and subsequently began offering its own comparison search results, cutting the originators of the concept out of the loop.

    That seems to strike many people as an unfair market advantage, equivalent to opening a venue and leasing out space to vendors, only to displace the most successful vendors with your own stores.

    Of course, no one would feel much sympathy is Simon Property Group started booting Sears, JC Penney, Macy’s, Lord & Taylor, and other major retailers from their malls — putting “Simon Property Department Stores” in place of those retailers — except the major retailers and their stockholders.

    Still, should the consumer care if they get the best prices on the best merchandise?

  • http://www.InteractMarketing.com beccalori

    How about this one?

    Try a search for “Ad Agency” , “Advertising Agency”, “Web Design Firm”, “SEO Company”, “Social Media Agency” or any similar phrase. Try again with your zip code appended to the end of the search. Do you get universal map listings appearing anywhere in the SERP?

    All these phrases used to yield universal map listings front and center – just like any other business such as “Law Firm” or “Accountant” ,etc. For the last 18 months they have been suppressed – even though over 1,500 posts from businesses owners on Google forums have questioned this practice. For example- read this thread from 2009: http://www.google.com/support/forum/p/maps-archive/thread?tid=1f506c6b4fd31f70&hl=en

    So what is the house ad that is always near the top of search results for these searches?

    The issue when addressed by Google on their forum was referred to as a “glitch” and they were looking into it… 2 years ago.

    Looking for an Ad Agency?
    Search Google Professionals & find
    the right agency for your business.

    So one could presume that Google is censoring your local ad agency from results and steering towards their services and business partners. This includes billion dollar , hundred year old agencies in New York, Chicago, L.A.,, etc. Is it right to render an entire industry invisible online?