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Quietly, Google has been retooling in a bid to beat Amazon as the place to shop — and some early evidence suggests the search giant isn’t crazy to try.
In a survey released today, Google’s transition last fall to all-paid product listing display ads in search results is paying off. (These are the product photos that show up next to price and seller info at the top of “organic” Google search results for products, such as at the top of this search for “iPhone 5.”) Digital ad management provider Marin Software found that advertisers managing $4 billion annually in online ad campaigns through its platform spent 600 percent more on Google product listing ads after the change in October than before. That result alone doesn’t necessarily surprise: If Google says pay to play, advertisers have little choice.
But they may be paying gladly. Marin found that the paid product listings were turning up more in Google search results, especially around the holidays, which means advertisers’ products are getting seen more by potential buyers.
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