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Single Most Terrifying Trend Facing Google

     
6:36 pm on Dec 18, 2014 (gmt 0)

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In This article "Single Most Terrifying Trend Facing Google" [businessinsider.com...] by Nicholas Carlso he follows up on another article "Forget Apple, Forget Facebook: Here's The One Company That Actually Terrifies Google Execs."

Maybe the statement by Google that "Google is no longer a search engine but a Knowledge Engine" is a half truth
As a knowledge engine it is generally failing.

Do you think their real goal is to become a product selling engine? Direct from manufacture to consumer and skim off the top?

[edited by: brotherhood_of_LAN at 7:02 pm (utc) on Dec 18, 2014]
[edit reason] fixed link [/edit]

1:46 pm on Dec 19, 2014 (gmt 0)

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Do you think their real goal is to become a product selling engine?


I would have thought so however it ain't going to be as easy as they may possibly think because setting-up production facilities and supply chains can be an exasperating task and many companies that already know this may not even be interested in Google who, most probably, would want everything legally nailed to the ground and sue the butt off anyone who didn't supply on time.

Think of a new large construction project and the amount of services, products and people involved in just that one build and then multiply it many times over. Believe me building computers and programmes is easy work compared to the complexity of many projects and the sourcing of the products required and trying to find the real experts and quality control inspectors is yet another headache.

Sure, making loads of branded electronic products, videos, music, books etc may be fairly easy but where the real money is to be made, that's altogether another ball game.
4:10 pm on Dec 19, 2014 (gmt 0)

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I love my Kindle Fire. When it wears out I'll buy a new one straight away. I use it nearly every day to buy stuff. I'm sorry for the poor delivery guys who only get 0.45p for delivering it but it saves me a lot of hassle.

Google? Who are they?
4:17 pm on Dec 19, 2014 (gmt 0)

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Do you think their real goal is to become a product selling engine? Direct from manufacture to consumer and skim off the top?


There is nothing like the enormous profit that they stumbled across in selling stuff. I don't know if Amazon even makes a profit (I mean real profits, not this 'EBITDA' and other creative nonsense) on those wafer-thin margins.

If Amazon go broke I'll go and join a monastery, life won't be worth living anymore. If (when?) Google turns belly up I'll be throwing a huge party and you're all invited.
4:27 pm on Dec 19, 2014 (gmt 0)

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Some things Amazon makes very good margins on, I know, I manufacture and sell the same things..Amazon sell at about the industry ( happily for me the markup in France is much higher ) average 300 % to 400% markup for them ..

Here Amazon follow the local market prices, but I at least also offer free "signed for" insured delivery ( 48 hrs ) so they don't affect me..and they have no "extra options" and only crap quality and designs on offer..

Agree with the article ..Amazon are the only ones that G would be worrying about ( hence their "diversification attempts" ) ..also agree with Redbar, deciding to sell stuff is the easy part, making the whole thing happen smoothly from design then manufacturing or sourcing to it arriving to the customer(s) is waaaay harder..
5:45 pm on Dec 19, 2014 (gmt 0)

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Google would be starting all that at a major disadvantage. Amazon built up year over year and though G has the big bucks to follow (and even surpass) their infrastructure, they are already well known, and they have never been known for Customer Service or Always Getting it Right - 2 things that can make or break any online business that deals in sales.
11:25 pm on Dec 19, 2014 (gmt 0)

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Google will go wherever the money is. And, if that means crushing competitors, they're all the more interested. So I think it's a natural fit for them to go after Amazon's space.

I have had only good experiences with Amazon as a customer. That plus their good pricing and tons of user product reviews is why I keep going back. And I don't google what I'm looking for, I go right to Amazon first (and use the app).
1:33 am on Dec 20, 2014 (gmt 0)

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Do you think their real goal is to become a product selling engine? Direct from manufacture to consumer and skim off the top?


I think their real goal is to become even more valuable--and even more essential--to their advertisers.

Google Search is about search (and the profits that come from controlling access to a vast worldwide search audience), not about being a retailer.
1:44 am on Dec 20, 2014 (gmt 0)

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I think their goal is to provide the user with what they are interested in without them ever having to leave Google.

I remember back when Google was still a fairly new company, there was Yahoo! with a homepage full of links to all it's services then there was google with a search box and a button. It was refreshing but I fairly soon began to think of google as a hidden portal. It had a lot of services, but only presented them to the user when they displayed an interest. Back then it was clever, now it is indeed scary. Its sites using structured data and micro formats that are giving Google knowledge. The reason people search is to find an answer. Very often I am seeing the answer in bold text at the top of the serp.

Mack.
2:09 am on Dec 20, 2014 (gmt 0)

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Google will go wherever the money is. And, if that means crushing competitors, they're all the more interested. So I think it's a natural fit for them to go after Amazon's space.

25% of Google's board of directors are past Amazon executives. I don't think either fears one another. I think they are working together more closely then they want the public to think.
2:21 am on Dec 20, 2014 (gmt 0)

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I used to wonder about that possibility, could be,( there is a certain amount of collusion between all the big players , if only due to them having some VCs in common ) but, they would have to keep it so quiet if it went beyond that level, such as boosting Amazon in serps by rigging the algos in their favor, that I would have expected something to leak by now..

Then again, even though the 5 eyes had been running what they were /are running for decades, only recently did the civilians get wind of any of it via Snowden..
3:00 pm on Dec 20, 2014 (gmt 0)

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I think their goal is to provide the user with what they are interested in without them ever having to leave Google.


Without a doubt, they achieved this in one fell swoop with images cutting many sites' traffic by an average of 80%.

I think they are working together more closely then they want the public to think.


And if they were to be found out I would expect to see some very hefty fines such as the Libor Fixing Scandal.

[en.wikipedia.org...]

The EU are watching them both very closely as it is.
4:31 pm on Dec 21, 2014 (gmt 0)

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I think their goal is to provide the user with what they are interested in without them ever having to leave Google.


Google's mission statement has always been pretty direct:

Google's mission is to organize the world's information and make it universally accessible and useful.


If some people let their imaginations or wishful thinking append the phrase "via 10 blue links and nothing else," that's their fault, not Google's.

In terms of serving the user, it makes perfect sense for search engines to display direct answers for users who want basic facts. (That's why you see Bing, Yandex, and DuckDuckGo doing it, too.)

The ideal SERP, from the perspective of both the searcher and the search engine, is one with:

- An "answer box" for people who want simple answers ("capital of Moldova," "temperature in Taipei")

- Links to sites that offer more and better information than the answer box does.

In other words, direct answers and third-party sites complement each other and enhance the searcher's experience. That's why, if site owners want to rank well on SERPs in the years ahead, they should provide more in-depth information than the search engines do.
5:20 pm on Dec 21, 2014 (gmt 0)

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That's why, if site owners want to rank well on SERPs in the years ahead, they should provide more in-depth information than the search engines do.


Self-Defeating. That "Better" or "in-depth" data will be indexed and served by that "third party".

Right now the 'net is divided into social (FB as largest), sales (Amazon as largest), and search (Google as largest). Of the three only one sector offers tangible goods, with home addresses, accounts, sales information, etc.

G might want to be in that tangible sector but it is a large row to hoe as they are NOT retail, wholesale, or manufacturing. They are an advertising service (that's the money) and search is their gimmick.
9:25 pm on Dec 21, 2014 (gmt 0)

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Self-Defeating. That "Better" or "in-depth" data will be indexed and served by that "third party"


Nope. Google isn't trying to be the new Wikipedia, and in any case, copyright laws prevent wholesale use of in-depth content.

Right now the 'net is divided into social (FB as largest), sales (Amazon as largest), and search (Google as largest)


Yes, and is there any doubt as to who (Facebook, Amazon, or Google) is earning the biggest profits?
10:58 am on Dec 22, 2014 (gmt 0)

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Nope. Google isn't trying to be the new Wikipedia, and in any case, copyright laws prevent wholesale use of in-depth content.


Not an argument for argument's sake, that's just not correct. Inside any in depth article is that "nugget" for the answer box Goggle displays.

If you put it out there, and G can get it, it will be displayed. And copyright laws ALLOW that as fair use, short, and/or scholarly report.

On the other hand, if the user gets what they way from the "lite" version G provides there is no incentive to seek further, thus that "in depth" article is never seen.

Merely a comment that one should not delude oneself that if I do it better than G I will get something. Reality is once an answer is sufficient for the user they are off to other places...
2:46 pm on Dec 22, 2014 (gmt 0)

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sales (Amazon as largest)


I haven't seen any mention of Alibaba as yet or is this a US centric question and not a global one?
3:29 pm on Dec 22, 2014 (gmt 0)

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On the other hand, if the user gets what they way from the "lite" version G provides there is no incentive to seek further, thus that "in depth" article is never seen.


That's like saying:

"Once someone has read John 3:16 [the "nugget"], he won't bother to read the rest of the New Testament."

Even if that were true, the fact remains that most search engines (not just Google) are providing direct answers for the "nugget" seekers, and that trend won't stop because lazy publishers find it inconvenient. Publishers who target "nugget" seekers are going to end up like the people who sold DOS memory managers and Winsocks.
4:19 pm on Dec 22, 2014 (gmt 0)

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The "nugget" is not G's potential fright. From the OP's link to article:

Well, we checked back with ComScore recently, and the news remains bad for Google. Desktop search queries on Amazon increased 47% between September 2013 and September 2014, according to ComScore.


This thread is about users going direct to Amazon BYPASSING G altogether.
6:09 pm on Dec 22, 2014 (gmt 0)

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"Well, we checked back with ComScore recently, and the news remains bad for Google. Desktop search queries on Amazon increased 47% between September 2013 and September 2014, according to ComScore."
Looks like the ghost of Christmas future is scaring Google and its buddies. :) With Wikipedia, almost a whole generation learned to go to Wikipedia first rather than Google for homework help. Now Amazon is taking the online buying market away from Google. Google happily murdered Mom and Pop sites in its pursuit of the almighty Dollar so I doubt there would be too many of those small business owners getting upset about Google getting demolished by Amazon.

Google's "knowledge" graph is just another Wikipedia scraper designed to keep users on Google's own site. But this development -- users completely bypassing Google -- should really scare Google management. Every device that Amazon sells makes it easier to build a walled garden. What Amazon really does is that it makes it easy for the user to buy. There's no faffing about with Google and dodgy adverts and visiting a bunch of websites. All the user has to do is to visit Amazon. There's no opportunity for Google to sell advertising. And for an advertising company such as Google, that's quite deadly.

Regards...jmcc
7:16 pm on Dec 22, 2014 (gmt 0)

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What Amazon really does is that it makes it easy for the user to buy. There's no faffing about with Google and dodgy adverts and visiting a bunch of websites. All the user has to do is to visit Amazon. There's no opportunity for Google to sell advertising. And for an advertising company such as Google, that's quite deadly.


Amazon's efforts to create a "walled garden" haven't worked too well so far (the Fire phone being a case in point), but in any case, the more successful Amazon becomes, the more pressure there is on Amazon's competitors to reach prospects outside the "walled garden." That translates into more demand for advertising and more profits for Google.
7:57 pm on Dec 22, 2014 (gmt 0)

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Something else to think about:

If Amazon does have dreams of creating a "walled garden," why is that? Maybe because so much of its traffic comes from Google organic search?

It seems to me that Amazon is a lot more vulnerable than Google is. Consider:

- Every cluster of Google Shopping ads on a Google commercial SERP represents sales opportunities for Amazon's competitors.

- The trend on commercial SERPs is toward more ads and fewer organic reults (including Amazon results) above the fold.

- There's no guarantee that Amazon will always dominate organic e-commerce results the way it does now.

No wonder Amazon is desperate to get people to buy its Fire smartphones and join Amazon Prime.
8:47 pm on Dec 22, 2014 (gmt 0)

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So to summarize what everyone has said in this thread so far, Google is terrified because they realize that they have been bamboozled into taking the wrong direction, and even their desperation drives them to suddenly change course, it's far too late for them to ever catch up with Amazon.
8:53 pm on Dec 22, 2014 (gmt 0)

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@ aristotle That's it. And you can see how it is upsetting Google and its FUD buddies. Google screwed up and now the web has changed and they are losing relevance.

Regards...jmcc
8:57 pm on Dec 22, 2014 (gmt 0)

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Amazon's efforts to create a "walled garden" haven't worked too well so far (the Fire phone being a case in point), but in any case, the more successful Amazon becomes, the more pressure there is on Amazon's competitors to reach prospects outside the "walled garden." That translates into more demand for advertising and more profits for Google.
No. Google is losing traffic. Amazon is developing momentum and that will drag all those Mom and Pop sites that Google murdered into its wake. They have the opportunity to set up on Amazon. Amazon's main competition is Ebay. Google is irrelevant.

Regards...jmcc
11:05 pm on Dec 22, 2014 (gmt 0)

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Amazon is only one shop, though, and no one is ever going to limit their buying to a single shop.

Google should really have an advantage, because they can offer the user a whole variety of different decent options -- something Amazon would be loathe to do. Unfortunately google seem determined to squander that advantage though, by always serving up their own products, or serving up the same handful a big name sites all the time.
11:43 pm on Dec 22, 2014 (gmt 0)

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That's not exactly right, Londrum,
Amazon has many shops on the same site. That's its advantage. If one is searching for a product, a number of buying options is often presented. Then you've got the Amazon fulfillment chain and customer service aspects. Though Google is definitely making an absolute hames of any advantage that it once had.

Regards...jmcc
11:55 pm on Dec 22, 2014 (gmt 0)

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I don't think the average user appreciates all that stuff though. To them it's just "Amazon". It's amazon's logo at the top, Amazon on their email, and Amazon on their credit card bill
12:06 am on Dec 23, 2014 (gmt 0)

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Yep but the vendors do appreciate that Amazon is a shopping platform and it allows them to sell their products. That kind of stability -- not having one's business obliterated by some Google minion's cack-handed effort to solve a self-inflicted problem -- is quite attractive for a business.

Regards...jmcc
2:40 am on Dec 23, 2014 (gmt 0)

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Yep but the vendors do appreciate that Amazon is a shopping platform and it allows them to sell their products. That kind of stability -- not having one's business obliterated by some Google minion's cack-handed effort to solve a self-inflicted problem -- is quite attractive for a business.


Of course, Amazon extracts a stiff price for allowing third-party vendors to sell its products. Here's Amazon's referral-fee schedule, for those who haven't seen it:

[sellercentral.amazon.com...]

It isn't surprising that quite a few businesses are happy to trade the stability of being an Amazon vendor for the uncertainties of organic search when the latter is free.

As for terrifying trends, this recent article might be worth a look. It's titled "The Party Is Over for Amazon: The retail giant was unstoppable—until this year. What happened?":

[newrepublic.com...]
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