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Marketplace Wars: Is Google Cheaper than Amazon?

Posted on 11.13.2016

Turns out that Amazon may not always be cheaper (for buyers or sellers). 

Research out from 360pi reveals that Google Shopping offered a lower price than Amazon on a sample of Amazon’s own Best Sellers 59 percent of the time relative to Amazon proper and 58 percent relative to Amazon marketplace sellers. In fact, Amazon was found to out-price Google Shopping only 25 percent of the time on the sampled assortment. This is based on 360pi’s price comparison of 750 Amazon self-reported Best Seller products to the same items advertised on Google Shopping across numerous categories, as sampled October 13, 2016. 

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The e-commerce industry is very vocal about claiming marketplaces are the next retail battleground. Google Shopping is in effect one big marketplace and 96.5 percent of Amazon’s assortment is offered by their marketplace sellers. The size and breadth of Amazon’s marketplace community is arguably one of the giant’s biggest competitive weapons and with 84 percent of shoppers anticipated to start their shopping on Amazon this holiday, the window for other retailers to catch up is closing fast. Walmart knows this and just spent $3.3 billion U.S. to acquire, largely for its marketplace. And, it would seem with Google Shopping’s price aggressive position against Amazon’s own Best Sellers that Google is staking its own claim for retail dominance.

“When someone wants to research something they start on Google, when they want to buy something they start on Amazon. Google knows this and needs Google Shopping to succeed – as much from an opportunity as a threat perspective,” said Jenn Markey, VP Marketing, 360pi. “With endless opportunities for product placement in its core search business, Google is upping the ante with aggressive pricing on Google Shopping and hoping shoppers take notice.”

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