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Merchant Adoption Rates of Google Checkout vs. PayPal Express

By Ryan Douglas

Recent news through Internet Retailer reports that the adoption rate of Google Checkout is slightly higher with Top 500 retailers than PayPal?s Express Checkout.

It is not surprising to hear this news as I work for a merchant who has offered Google Checkout since it was released to the public back in the summer of 2006. I?ve felt strongly that Google would be able to use this data to help retailers/advertisers offer more effective ads to potential shoppers. That time is still likely to come, but I imagine Google is working on it somewhere.

Does Google Only Listen If the New York Times Calls Them Out?

Yesterday the New York Times ran an article that addresses what is becoming a rather serious issue in the local online marketing space.

The issue is around just how easy it is for someone to get a Google Places listing tagged as “Permanently Closed”. Now, in a world where there was respect and decency this shouldn’t be that big a deal but we are talking about the Internet here. If there is a way for someone to make a buck or prevent someone from making a buck by exploiting a hole in an open system like Google Places you can bet there will be those who will do it and even smile when they do.

The article reads

Google lets new users say ‘no thank you’ to Google+

No ThanksFor the past few years, Google+ has been building up the user numbers the easy way – by requiring people to have an account if they want to use Gmail, YouTube or other Google service. It’s been an issue for many, especially when they hooked their wagon to YouTube and forced people to use their real names on their video uploads.

People yelled and Google backed off, a little, but now it looks like they’ve taken a big step back. Larry Kim of The Wordstream Blog, discovered a change in the way Google is doing business. Now, when you create a new Gmail account, you no longer have to open a matching Google+ profile as well.

New SEO Best Practice: Whining

It appears as if it’s not just the poor businesses in Europe but now sites of all different kinds that have a funny view of Google as a search engine. I say funny because they apparently have decided that in order to get ranked (or retain rankings that they have lost) they need to implement the latest technique in SEO which is complaining about fair treatment from Google.

An article in the Wall Street Journal this past weekend reports

Google Inc. increasingly is promoting some of its own content over that of rival websites when users perform an online search, prompting competing sites to cry foul.

The Internet giant is displaying links to its own services—such as local-business information or its Google Health service—above the links to other, non-Google content found by its search engine.

Google Universal Search – A Major Update to Interface & Algorithm

Google has just sent us details of a series of updates to their interface and algorithm, as they move towards what they call a “universal search model”.

With Google’s universal search, every time you conduct a search, Google checks across all of its search properties – web, image, video, news etc – and presents a single unified results page, that incorporates the most relevant content.

At first, universal search results may be subtle. Over time users will recognize additional types of content integrated into their search results as the company advances toward delivering a truly comprehensive search experience.

Google Throws Open the Google+ Doors for All and Adds Search

While I know this will sound like a load of crap, it really did happen.

While I was running today I was thinking about some of the near ambivalence being shown toward Google+ outside of the over active geek crowd. I was wondering when Google was going to open the floodgates to let anyone in because the longer they wait the less likely people are going to care to join.

Well, little did I know that today was indeed the day that Google+ would be opened to the public and this should be interesting. The announcement comes from the Google blog

Is Google Just Putting Lipstick On Its Places Pig?

Remember the infamous ad from many moons ago by Charles Schwab that showed a room full of stock brokers being incentivized to sell a bad stock and the manager tells the team to “Put some lipstick on this pig” ? If you don’t check it out here.

Anyway, that expression is harsh for sure but I am beginning to wonder if one of Google’s concentrations these days, Places, is just another instance of a big company promoting a less than workable solution because it needs to. In other words, is Google putting lipstick on their Places pig?

They have put a pretty new landing page up for Places which looks nice. Check it out.