Saturday, March 07, 2015

Google WalMart fire off over local maps

For a long time Google and Wal-Mart have been coordinate over local ads, yet things don’t seem to go so where now. The local ads that Google does require companies such as Walmart share their inventory and pricing information with Google. The coalition has been holding strong until now. Apparently big retailers such as Walmart, among others, do not feel that assured about their data usage by Google. After all, the inventory and pricing information are crucial for running businesses, and they provide a whole lot of information into the inner operations of a company.

Recently, Walmart has broken out of this marriage with Google local ads. People familiar with the matter says that the major concern is over the sharing the inventory and pricing data. Given the gigantic size of Walmart, such a worry is indeed legit. If google have such data from most of the retailers, then basically they have the power to “see through the market”. Although in terms of overall market efficiency this might be a good integration, but too much information sharing could bring more harm to retailers than the benefits. That might explain why only 17% of the surveyed companies are using it. 

Report from WSJ:

Wal-Mart was also concerned that Local Inventory Ads forced it to compete with smaller rivals to attract shoppers, diluting the advantage of its brand name. The move was striking because Wal-Mart was an early test partner for the program, one person familiar with the matter said.

Once a shopper clicks on a Google Shopping ad and ends up on, the company can steer users to its brick-and-mortar stores, by showing what’s available nearby, offering fast delivery or allowing shoppers to pick up products they’ve bought online, Mr. Copeland said.

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