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Google: We Have No Plans To Go Retail

By - Source: AllThingsD | B 9 comments

Google wants to be a retailer's best friend, not their landlord.

In a recent interview with AllThingsD, Google’s VP of Shopping Sameer Samat said that the company has no plans to become a retailer like Amazon despite how things look on Google Shopping and Google Play. Being a retailer at this point would not be the right decision, he said.

Speculation about becoming a full-fledged online retailer began to emerge after Google acquired shopping locker service BufferBox in late November. The Waterloo, Ontario-based start-up provides users with temporary lockers in central locations that accept packages from online merchants. Once a package arrives, the user receives an email containing a one-time-use code. Once the package is acquired, the locker is used for another customer.

Why anyone would think Google was going full-blown retail based on this acquisition is anyone's guess. According to AllThingsD, "some" have wondered if Google is currently building an infrastructure to fully move into the retail space. Updates to Google Shopping's visual presentation don't help alleviate the speculation, as the report points out.

"A deeper dive into the Shopping experience reveals that some of the product pages have a blue button in the top right-hand corner that could easily be mistaken for Amazon’s 'Add to Cart' yellow button," AllThingsD reports.

But Samat said that the BufferBox acquisition had nothing to do with becoming an Amazon competitor. Instead, the move was about helping other retailers become more competitive. Indeed, Google now has a way for its listed retailers to offer products to consumers who may not have a set or secure location to receive packages.

"We are trying to provide a level playing field for retailers," he said.

Samat also joked about receiving "The Least Popular Dude" award for the complete overhaul made to Google Shopping over the summer. The new system forces retailers to pay a fee for making sure their products appear within Google Shopping. Previously merchants could upload their data feed for free, but for this holiday season, this will be the first time they've had to pay to participate.

Thus, rather than becoming an actual retailer, Google merely wants to be a retailer's best friend while selling its own hardware on the side. Call it a refined search engine for merchants that makes it easy for consumers to search for a product served up all across the internet rather than within a refined network.

To read the full interview, head here.

 

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  • 17 Hide
    kinggremlin , December 25, 2012 3:17 PM
    translate.google.com translation:

    "Everything is in place and we will announce our move into retail sometime early next week."
Other Comments
  • 17 Hide
    kinggremlin , December 25, 2012 3:17 PM
    translate.google.com translation:

    "Everything is in place and we will announce our move into retail sometime early next week."
  • 0 Hide
    fuzzion , December 25, 2012 3:42 PM
    Title should read:

    "Google reassures partners that they will not get buggered from the back"
  • 0 Hide
    jhansonxi , December 25, 2012 3:50 PM
    Quote:
    Indeed, Google now has a way for its listed retailers to offer products to consumers who may not have a set or secure location to receive packages.


    That makes good sense when you have these types of problems:
    http://newsfeed.time.com/2012/12/21/ups-employee-caught-stealing-ipad-delivery/?hpt=hp_t3
  • 0 Hide
    trumpeter1994 , December 25, 2012 4:05 PM
    So they're in a way turning Google shopping into a bigger money maker like the did with Youtube, only obviously to a somewhat lesser degree.
  • 2 Hide
    freggo , December 25, 2012 4:26 PM
    All you need is an emailed code to retrive your package from the locker?
    No ID check or anything?

    Sounds like the perfect setup for use as a 'drop' when shopping with a stolen ID !
  • -1 Hide
    nebun , December 25, 2012 4:31 PM
    interesting....yet they are selling the chrome book....if that's not retail, then i don't know what it is
  • 0 Hide
    mlopinto2k1 , December 26, 2012 2:35 AM
    nebuninteresting....yet they are selling the chrome book....if that's not retail, then i don't know what it is
    I think they mean making a brick and mortar google store. Maybe?
  • 0 Hide
    whiteodian , December 26, 2012 2:42 PM
    If only they could get the Nexus 4 back in stock. Then maybe they could dive into retail.
  • 0 Hide
    jonjonjon , December 26, 2012 6:06 PM
    googles shopping website is horrible. anytime i try using it i quickly find myself going to newegg who usually has better prices anyway. google also now offers some shipping purchase protection. if you order something on newegg or tigerdirect you get a message for free purchase protection from google.