PriceGrabber Bought by GUS Plc for $485 Million

A shopping comparison engine purchased by a credit checking company?

However, what does make sense, is that Experian is owned by GUS Plc, “Britain’s second-largest retailer by market value”. Yet, the press release states that the acquisition will fall under Experian because it “complements Experian’s existing operations, connecting consumers to companies over the Internet.”

At first, I was thinking to myself, “Now, I might be missing something here, but, wouldn’t it be more beneficial to have PriceGrabber operate under GUS’s Argos Retail Group?”

Then, nearing the end of the official press release is where it begins to come together as far as their plans.

“Retail and catalogue shopping is the second largest vertical market for Experian Globally.”

Search Use Grows; Ask Jeeves See Biggest Jump

ClickZ reports that search volume rose 15 percent in the five months between June and October of this year, according to details from Nielsen//NetRatings. Ask Jeeves saw the biggest jump in market share.

Ask Jeeves edged out players such as My Way Search to rank fifth in market share. The search engine experienced a 77 percent growth in market share to reach 2.6 percent. Following its recent acquisition by IAC/InterActiveCorp, the company announced plans to shed “Jeeves” and become Ask.com.

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Microsoft’s Plans for Google?

Greg Linden offers his thoughts on how Microsoft can put a hurting on Google. Sparked by this comment in the New York Times (sub)

Mr. Gates, the Microsoft co-founder and chairman, paused, looked down at his folded hands and smiled broadly, as if enjoying a private joke. “Nah,” he replied, “we’ll do something different.”

Greg suggests…

It seems like Microsoft could do a fair amount of damage here by trying to drive the share the advertising engine takes in this deal to near zero. To do that, it just needs to launch its own AdSense-like product and be willing to set its take to its breakeven point.

Why are Bloggers Getting Greedy?

I’m pretty sure I am not the first person to point this out, but I think blogging is in danger of causing its own demise. The problem? Too many damn ads!

Everyone is advertising these days. Everyone is told to advertise. There’s even blogs that explain – if not compel – other bloggers to turn, what is supposed to be a medium for self expression, into a hardcore business with rules, standards and yes, lots of advertising.

Now don’t get me wrong, having advertisers on your blog is not a bad thing. Indeed, back at SEL, I sold more than $100,000 a year in advertising and at MP, I shamelessly plug my own company. So what is my particular beef? Why am I so crabby?

Google Invites You to Abandon Clean Homepage

Google is keen to see if you’d rather clutter-up their homepage or keep it squeeky clean. To that end they have launched an API for the hompage, allowing developers to create modules of content

Gada.be Back in Google

Brian Livingston summarizes recents events with Chris Pirillo’s Gada.be – a metasearch engine for RSS feeds.

It appears creating search results on the fly, as sub-domains, didn’t sit too well with Google’s spam filters. After some adjustments, the site is now back in Google.

How Google Can Win AOL

Tom Foremski thinks that Google has a good chance of keeping its relationship with AOL. He explains that it’s not simply a case of who’s promising the most cash.

Google has a massive sales force that is already established in every significant metropolitan area in the world. And that sales force has been forming key customer relationships for several years.

Is it better to take the bigger offer? Could there be any question of potential brand damage if AOL gets a reputation as place where ads convert poorly?

Where do CEO fiduciary duties to shareholders stand at Time-Warner? Maximize short-term profits at the expense of long-term?

As Foremski points out, AOL could be seen as losing – no matter who they select – simply because they won’t own the advertisers themselves.