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Google's Eric Schmidt Sees Amazon As Its Biggest Competitor In Search

     
11:20 am on Oct 14, 2014 (gmt 0)

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Anyone operating from a garage!

He's right to be wary, although, I suspect that's a bit of a dig at Microsoft.

Google chairman Eric Schmidt has said the firm's biggest rival in online search is e-commerce giant Amazon.

Mr Schmidt fought back at claims that Google enjoyed unrivalled dominance of the online search market.

"Many people think our main competition is Bing or Yahoo. But, really, our biggest search competitor is Amazon," he said in a speech in Berlin.Google's Eric Schmidt Sees Amazon As Its Biggest Competitor In Search [bbc.co.uk]
However, even though Google holds the dominant position of accounting for more than 90% of the online search market, Mr Schmidt said he was still wary of the "next Google".

"Someone, somewhere in a garage is gunning for us. I know, because not long ago we were in that garage. Change comes from where you least expect it," he added.
1:25 pm on Oct 14, 2014 (gmt 0)

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Then I wonder why 25% of Google's board of directors are previous Amazon executives with what are likely many personally held shares in BOTH companies? The CEO of Amazon was also an early investor in Google from what I've read, but I don't know how many shares of Google he still owns (Amazon disclosures have always been murky). It seems these companies are joined at the hip - one wanting to dominate information and the other ecommerce.

I don't buy what Eric Schmidt has been saying lately. Just like that story where Eric Schmidt says spying could "break the internet." These are strange comments coming from the top data harvesting company in the world.
4:00 pm on Oct 14, 2014 (gmt 0)

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Google's Eric Schmidt Sees Amazon As Its Biggest Competitor In Search


Seems like a pretty clear message to ecom sites in general.
4:14 pm on Oct 14, 2014 (gmt 0)

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Exactly, ken_b, and all you need to do is look at the expansion of the now renamed Express, from google and you see where Google is heading.

Google Express Expanded to New Cities and More Stores [webmasterworld.com]
5:11 pm on Oct 14, 2014 (gmt 0)

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Schmidt's comment about Amazon illustrates a point: Statistics about market share can be deceptive. For example, the claim that Google has a 68% market share in the U.S. or a 90% market share in Germany is true only if you count self-described search engines and nothing else. It's like calculating market share for cameras and ignoring cameras on smartphones.
5:20 pm on Oct 14, 2014 (gmt 0)

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It's like calculating market share for cameras and ignoring cameras on smartphones.


lol
The other way around: cameras on smartphones, and ignoring compact cameras.
8:51 pm on Oct 14, 2014 (gmt 0)

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the claim that Google has a 68% market share in the U.S. or a 90% market share in Germany is true only if you count self-described search engines


You seriously still think that Google is a search engine?
8:55 pm on Oct 14, 2014 (gmt 0)

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You seriously still think that Google is a search engine?


If it isn't, then one has to wonder why Eric Schmidt (or anyone else) is talking about its market share in search.
10:32 pm on Oct 14, 2014 (gmt 0)

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Lets consider the new definition of search to mean finding products, apps, books, movies and music to DIRECTLY SELL which makes Amazon is a huge competitor.

If search means Kindle vs. Android and the entire ecosystem that goes along with it, they're locking horns in a major way. What most search literalists don't get is search is way beyond that little search box on the screen as it now includes all those devices that need information and media, plus shopping, that entire ecosystem is now search.

Amazon is one of the top dogs with a killer ecosystem that was in place before it had all the delivery devices because others were providing them before Amazon got direct skin in the Android game.

Google is search converging on sales and Amazon is sales converging on search. Google has mobile devices, music, movies, books etc. vs Amazon with Kindle that pre-dated Android, and they had books, music and movies that also pre-dated Google Play. Don't forget Amazon has it's own private Android Marketplace for it's ever growing range of Kindle Android devices nipping even more at Google's profits. Plus the search engines are going trying to add sales and delivery such as Google's new delivery service, which also puts them into direct competition with Amazon.

It's a Vegas cage match for sure!

So they already compete in a very large way, just not over search market share, but that was only because Amazon dropped that ball.

Amazon was building a search engine started many years ago called A9 which is still online if you didn't know: [a9.com...]

It had some cool bleeding edge stuff back in the day but I haven't looked at it in a while but I do know some of the tech got rolled into Amazon.

A little direct history I know was from when my wife was on the founding team of Atomz.com, doing sweat equity before they even had an office. Atomz was an enterprise search engine, some of you may remember using their free site search long before Google even had site search. This is only relevant as one of their founderss who was a really bright search guy went to A9 a few years later.

So they were definitely building and recruiting actual people doing real web search technologies.

Where so you think the AWS with all that big cloud compute space came from? I think it was a left over artifact of scaling up a search engine that didn't go anywhere so they sold access to the resources left behind IMO.

Additionally, Amazon now has ads for external sites, people that advertised stuff that does not exist in Amazon or an Amazon store.

The other thing Amazon has hands down over Google is the fact that Amazon has a TON of hand curated content about nearly every product in the world and when people search for products, they tend to search at Amazon.

So basically Amazon with all these advertisers is already providing a search service, just not as big, and probably a lot safer since a lot of it is all hand curated and/or paid placement which eliminates most spammers and scammers.

When Google says they fear Amazon, it's probably not just the search itself unless you translate the word "SEARCH" to "ADVERTISING" aka AdWords, and in that respect, Amazon is a clear and present danger.

Most of what people do is search for products and considering Amazon sells almost everything on the planet and delivers it free and quick to us Amazon Prime members, it's a VERY clear and present danger since people can search Amazon directly on Amazon and skip the Google middleman and AdWords altogether.

None of that even has anything to do with search traffic technically but it could translate into Amazon ultimately being a full portal to everything which IMO is way overdue.
8:45 am on Oct 15, 2014 (gmt 0)

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iSearch - apple's new search?
2:36 pm on Oct 15, 2014 (gmt 0)

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Mr Schmidt fought back at claims that Google enjoyed unrivalled dominance of the online search market


Looks like he's trying to divert attention away from Google ruling the web search market, rather than anything else. No doubt he will mention another company or two in the future.

It's a well know technique called 'nudging' , a few comments, a few articles etc.
5:33 pm on Oct 15, 2014 (gmt 0)

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Anyone gunning for Google in their garage won't go far without the government funding they received. Besides, once they detect you, they'll have your location targeted and business destroyed before you can get too big. Just shows how paranoid Google is of any competition, no matter how small.

My tiny one man home improvement site was on a very nice upward rise from 2000 to 2010, getting better every year, right until they got greedy.

Since then every year has been progressively less (and coincidentally their profits exploding). Any time we see a minor upswing, they quickly correct it to a down trend.

There must be something in the algo that spots up and comers, then slaps them down even if you're 6 degrees away from any of their interests.

I've learned to hate them on their policies and actions. Biggest laugh ever was "don't be evil".
That started it all.

Google has turned the information super highway into the back alley behind the rendering plant for me.

Now that I've said my peace, I'll go watch my traffic dwindle back to zero. It will.
9:02 pm on Oct 15, 2014 (gmt 0)

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Well we've been getting it wrong, maybe Amazon marketplace is where we should be at. Developing there website by giving our content away free of charge,the choices online range from slim to non existent right now.
10:19 pm on Oct 15, 2014 (gmt 0)

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See this: [webmasterworld.com...]
5:02 am on Oct 16, 2014 (gmt 0)

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I don't take anything Eric says at face value.

When I'm thinking about buying a product of some kind, I don't bother with Google (which is cluttered with ads), I go to Amazon and look at reviews.
11:32 am on Oct 17, 2014 (gmt 0)

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I think this is quite an interesting view of how Eric Schmidt and Google itself see Google, and something many of us may have already latched onto given the way that Google has changed over the last 10 years.

If you want to buy a thing you go to Amazon. One might be tempted to conclude that Schmidt and Google see Google as more about buying things than about finding out information.
2:19 pm on Oct 17, 2014 (gmt 0)

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One might be tempted to conclude that Schmidt and Google see Google as more about buying things than about finding out information.


I think it's more likely that they see Amazon as the place where people go when they're in a mood to buy things.

For Google, information searches are the search engine's core mission, but they're also loss leaders. Commercial searches generate the ad clicks and revenue, so it makes sense for Google to view Amazon as a competitor.
8:35 am on Oct 19, 2014 (gmt 0)

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I think G is dealing with a problem of a maturing internet. Everyone has their niches where they go now. Amazon/Bestbuy/Tesco/Wallmart for shopping, FB/Twitter/Pinterest for social stuff, CNN/Fox/BBC/NYT/Guardian for news, and on and on.

I do maybe 2 searches a day on G. That was probably more like 10 a day 5 years ago. Of course there are new users coming online every day but for the vast majority of us, the internet is a city we know pretty well by now. Just as we don't randomly walk down new streets in our city, we don't, much, on the net either. I'd say 90% of my new content discovery in the last year has been via FB/Twitter links.
1:45 am on Oct 20, 2014 (gmt 0)

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That's kinda true ChandandlerBong. I don't use Google as much as I used to do. I guess I know where I want to go too (here, FB etc), I generally use Google when I'm researching, which isn't that often.

I have two pre-teen children. My son spends most of the time on Youtube, and my daughter on some game/chat site. They barely use Google/any other search engine at all.
 

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