International SEO Strategy: Get Trusted Quickly

Google Trusted Stores Program

Google rolled out its Trusted Stores program earlier this month, acknowledging the importance of trust to improving online shopping experiences.


Google Checkout Is Dead, Long Live Google Wallet

google-wallet-featured-1 Yesterday Google Checkout users were notified that it was being merged into and replaced by Google Wallet. This makes sense on every level. From a 'brand" and visibility standpoint Wallet is a more successful product already. Checkout was introduced in June, 2006 (it was rumored to be called "GBuy" ahead of launch). It was directed at both consumers and merchants. Checkout was also intended to be tightly integrated with AdWords. Online retailers or stores that used AdWords received favorable payment processing terms. In some ways it was Google's answer to PayPal but it was also different [...]


Google Eliminates Checkout Badge From SERPs

Those brightly-colored Google Checkout badges will disappear from e-tailers' AdWords ads, according to a post in Checkout Help first spotted by eCommerceCircle. They'll continue to be displayed in product search. Checkout icons in AdWords were originally introduced in 2006 and a new badge design was rolled out in 2007. [caption id="attachment_79473" align="aligncenter" width="223" caption="Then"][/caption] [caption id="attachment_79474" align="aligncenter" width="424" caption="Now"][/caption] As for the elimination of the badges... "We’re making this change to improve the user ex [...]


Once Condemned Google Now Hailed By Publishers For “One Pass”

Earlier this week Apple introduced its long-awaited in-app subscription service for publishers. As part of that arrangement Apple wants its standard 30 percent cut of iTunes/app revenue. However it threw a bone to publishers by allowing all revenue from subscriptions initiated outside the iTunes environment to be kept by publishers. Many publishers are now angry that Apple wants part of their subscription dollars and wants to get between them and their customers (once again). Almost like a predator lying in wait, the very next day Google pounced and announced One Pass, an open system in wh [...]


Would Gaming Fuel A Google Social Network?

Based on unnamed "sources," yesterday TechCrunch reported that Google had "secretly" invested more than $100 million in social gaming platform Zynga and is launching "Google Games," built partly on Zynga. Let's establish all the usual qualifiers; this is an unconfirmed story and so on. And there are plenty of times when these TechCrunch-surfaced rumors turn out to be wrong. But this one seems to be supported by a job posting ("Product Management Leader, Games – Mountain View"). Given that, here are the main elements of the TechCrunch story beyond the headline itself: The Google inv [...]


Google Fast Flip – Google’s Newspaper & Magazine Reader Goes Live

The previously rumored Google news site "Flipper" is in fact launching today as "Fast Flip" in Google Labs. But maybe it should be called Google Skimmer because it permits people to move very quickly through lots of visually rich news pages from dozens of partner publications. According to the Google Blog Post: Fast Flip is a new reading experience that combines the best elements of print and online articles. Like a print magazine, Fast Flip lets you browse sequentially through bundles of recent news, headlines and popular topics, as well as feeds from individual top publishers. As the name s [...]


Microsoft Cashback Comes to the MSN Toolbar

Although I don't personally use it I'm a fan of Microsoft's Cashback. That sounds like a contradiction I know. But I thought it was a very clever consumer-advertiser proposition when it launched in May of last year. It gives advertisers a way to stand out in search results* (and only pay if there's a sale) and offers consumers money back or rebates on their product purchases. On paper there was a kind of alignment of interests and it didn't seem simply like a bribe to users. Shortly after it launched there was a bump in traffic but it has failed to contribute in any meaningful way to the [...]


Pros & Cons Of Google’s “Darwinian Approach” To Products

This year is the 200th anniversary of naturalist Charles Darwin's birth. I bring that up because Google's approach to product decision-making has always struck me as "Darwinian." The company introduces new products and services, generally without much promotion, and then it's a version of survivor or "survival of the fittest." Another appropriate metaphor here is the "free market." If Google's products don't gain traction they may disappear back into the Google "engeneering" pool or form the basis for new species, as with the recent shuttering of Dodgeball and opening of Latitude. The co [...]


Android Paid Apps Launch: “It’s Business Time”

People have been expecting the paid Android apps market for months and it's finally, officially here. What this means is that developers can start charging for their apps and consumers will start gaining access to and paying for selected apps on Android phones (which now is only the G1). The Apple iPhone paid apps market has been very successful, with games leading the way among paid apps. Most of the top paid apps in the iTunes store run either $.99 or $1.99. Apple takes a cut of every transaction, whereas Android/Google will not. Perhaps the most interesting part of the announce [...]


Google Claims That Google Checkout Increases Conversion By 40% & Clicks By 10%

Google has added claims to its Google Checkout Merchant homepage that having Google Checkout as part of your AdWords ads will lead to higher conversions and a better click through rate. Google specifically writes that conversions will increase by 40% and the click-through-rate on your ads will increase by 10%. Here is a screen capture from the page: I spotted this via Google Blogoscoped, which has also documented the various Google checkout badges Google has used throughout the years. As you can see, having the Google Checkout badge makes the ad stand out from the other ads. So I am [...]


Google Checkout Steps Up Promotion Through AdWords

Steve LaLonde spotted Google sporting new checkout badges for some Google Checkout merchants within the AdWords listings. I was able to reproduce it for a search on petco, a Google Checkout merchant. Here is a side by side look at the checkout badges on AdWords. The $5 off version is the new version being tested, the other one is the normal checkout badge: Google has a large FAQ on badges, but this $5 off badge is new. Steve asked Google about the new badges and received this response: As part of this experiment, a percentage of search results on google.com will display the promotio [...]


Google Launches Google Checkout Trends

The Google Checkout blog announced that they have launched Google Checkout Trends. Google Checkout Trends is a flavor of Google Trends, but limits the data to that collected from Google Checkout merchants. It basically shows you what people are buying and selling online via Google Checkout. You can plug in one keyword or several keywords separated by comma, and it will show you a chart plotting revenue over time. At the time I am writing this, Google Checkout Trends is currently not working. I am sure Google is working on fixing it. In the meantime, if you want to see some examples of c [...]


Google Checkout For Non-Profits Customers Get AdWords Checkout Badges

The Google Checkout Blog announced that Google Checkout for Non-Profits users will now get the Google Checkout icon on their Google AdWords campaign. The Google checkout icon adds more visibility to your AdWords ads. In this case, it should help non-profits earn more money and also save with zero transaction fees through Google Checkout. Here is an example of the icon in action: Google first launched these badges in January 2007 and changed the way they looked in February. [...]


Gpay: Google To Enable Payments On Mobile Devices Via SMS?

Friday, a Google patent application filing named Text message payment was posted at the US Patent & Trademark Office site. The patent described how "GPay" can be used to make payment via text messages. An example of how Gpay can be used includes mostly offline scenarios such as paying for items in vending machines or paying simple offline retailers. Here is an image from the patent that shows a method of paying over your phone: There is a lot of coverage on this new patent application, along with a lot of speculating as to what it might mean to the future of paying for offline items. O [...]


“Google Promotion” Box Found On Google Product Search

Philipp Lenssen reported that Google is now using the Google Promotion label within Google Product Search results, for a promotion of the Google Checkout service above listings. Ionut Alex. Chitu saw this for a product search on watch and sent Philipp a screen capture. I don't see the promotion box coming up myself, though Danny does. This is the second sighting of a box labeled "promotion" in Google results. What is this Google Promotion label? Earlier this month we found Google promoting The Bourne Ultimatum without labeling the ad as a sponsored listing or with any disclaimer. Google [...]


eBay: Only 14 Percent Pleased With Google Checkout

Readers will recall Google recently backing down from eBay in pushing Google Checkout against eBay's PayPal. Google, eBay battle it out over online payments from Bloomberg is a good article shedding fresh light on how important PayPal is to eBay, to the degree that it would pull its ads from Google to protect something that produces one-quarter of its income. It also has eBay saying practically no one is pleased with Google Checkout, based on its own survey. From the article: Meanwhile, eBay's PayPal service, which generated a fourth of the company's revenue last year, has become increasing [...]


Mistaken Identity: Wearing Google Shirts To An eBay Event Might Be Bad For Your Health

Remember the fracas between Google and eBay, where Google was going to have a party for Google Checkout at last week's eBay Live event? It scored some collateral damage when two employees of MyStoreSpace.com found themselves interrogated for wearing Google shirts, though talking up Google Checkout as they did probably didn't help. Blogs MyStoreSpace's founder, one of the two involved: Events took an unexpected turn and I was thrown out by eBay's VP of Marketing and a team of bodyguards for wearing a polo shirt with a Google logo. The two were initially admitted despite the shirts, which had [...]


eBay Pulls Google AdWords Ads To Protest Google Checkout Moves

This week, eBay Live is happening in Boston, but the event is likely to be overshadowed by a fascinating and fast-developing controversy between the auction giant and Google. Rumors from ComparisonEngines.com and other sources last night and earlier today reported that eBay had pulled its ads off Google to protest a planned party (now cancelled) to promote Google Checkout, called "Let Freedom Ring," that was to coincide with eBay Live. Google planned the party to expose eBay sellers to its PayPal competitor. Google said it was doing so because eBay was rigidly refusing to discuss [...]


Google Checkout Now Supports Mobile Devices

The Google Checkout Blog announced that they now support Google Checkout over mobile devices and mobile enabled sites. The only difference, for a buyer, is when checking out over Google Checkout mobile is that they verify themselves with a PIN as opposed to their Google account login (i.e. email and password). Merchants who sign up today will automatically have the mobile functionality, however old merchants need to sign up for the mobile functionality - it is free. More details at http://checkout.google.com/support/bin/topic.py?topic=11659. [...]


Google Checkout’s Title Goes Missing On Google

Something look odd in the search results above for google checkout? Yes, that's the official Google Checkout home page listed first, but it's most definitely NOT the right title for the Google Checkout page. That's got folks at Digg wondering if Google Checkout has been hijacked, sparked from Jon West's original post here. No. It's just Google being lame. Below, more about how HiBidder.com ended up providing the current title for Google Checkout as listed on Google, as well as a look at the problems of dealing with titles for pages that a spider can't access. Most search engines, includ [...]


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