Local Availability Launches on Google Product Search

11/15/2010 11:12:00 AM

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When we announced Google’s local shopping mobile alpha this past March, we started with a simple goal of making it as easy to search for products in nearby stores as it is to shop online. Our vision was simple: partner with retailers to organize all of the world’s local product information. The mobile alpha began with a small group of innovative retail partners. Over the past six months, we have been excited with the reception of local availability on mobile and in product extension ads.

Today, we are pleased to announce the launch of local availability results in Google Product Search on desktop. Search for a product and click on the “nearby stores” label, and you can easily find a list of stores to call to check availability, and in many cases, information about whether the product is in stock nearby.




We have partnered with over 70 retail brands and launched over 35, including Williams-Sonoma, Guitar Center, and Office Depot. Through these partnerships, shoppers can now easily and quickly check on the local availability of 4 billion items in local stores. John Koryl, Senior Vice-President of eCommerce Marketing & Analytics at Williams-Sonoma, Inc., describes the value of this partnership to their customers:

"We want our customers to be able to shop whenever and wherever they choose. As a large multi-channel retailer, Williams-Sonoma, Inc., partnered with Google to show our customers the breadth and depth of our in-store product assortment in addition to the online inventory we have been sharing with Google for years. Local availability provides exceptional, local-level product inventory data, store directions and phone numbers. The key is providing our customers with options and Google local availability does exactly that.”

In addition to partnering directly with retailers, we’re also excited to announce that we have partnered with several leading retail software vendors – including JDA, Epicor, and Oracle – to create special adapters that make it even easier for interested retailers to participate. Wayne Usie, Senior Vice-President for Retail at JDA, describes the impact of this feature for retailers:

“JDA is pleased to be among the first companies to implement a tool that allows our customers to share with Google their individual store, product and inventory availability as a part of Google’s ‘local availability’ feature. When shoppers can quickly identify specific product information by store location, it not only leads to a simpler, more productive shopping experience, but can also deliver increased foot traffic and sales for retailers.”

If you’re interested in learning more, please visit our information page. If you use retail software from JDA, Epicor, or Oracle, you can work directly with your company representative to easily and securely submit your local product data to Google. For smaller retailers, watch this space; we’re exploring simple, easy-to-use solutions and look forward to updating you soon.

11 comments:

Anonymous said...

The link from Google main blog to here is broken

Anonymous said...

Yet another way Google is killing small LOCAL businesses. Big Box retailers do not need help, small businesses do!

Anonymous said...

I disagree that this is killing small businesses. Google isn't restricting who can send their availability. Maybe it can help small businesses out. There are only 70 retailers sending availability at this point. In the business world, you have to keep innovating.

Anonymous said...

Well done, Google. Great execution... Fundamentally disrupted the business models of Milo.com, Goodzer and Retailigence.

Beware of the mighty Google...

Scott said...

This looks very useful. Is there a timescale or plan to offer this in other countries too ?
Right now I think "classic" Google product search is only offered in USA, UK and Germany ?

Chris Keller said...

This is yet more evidence that local marketing matters. I wrote a blog post back in August aggregating a number of data points to prove that point. http://marketing.balihoo.com/blog/chris-keller/0/0/five-signs-that-local-marketing-is-much-more-than-a-trend

dadndadn said...

"Fundamentally disrupted the business models of Milo.com, Goodzer ....."

What exactly did Google disrupted in Goodzer's model for example? Giving the technology Goodzer is launching Google will be after these guys like crazy next year.

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myindigolives said...

This seems like a good-faith effort by Google to help, not kill off, small local businesses.

Why? Because small businesses that don't do any e-commerce at all can use Local Availability! They'd need to use standard identifiers, like UPCs, and sell products that were one of the category types Google specifies.

It might take some doing to figure how to submit product feeds correctly (there were lots of instruction pages). However, if it catches on, I foresee a cottage industry of Local Availability support service providers- similar to web analytics for Search. And that's a way for some of us to escape the dead-end job of in-store retail sales! Nice!