Elizabeth Marsten // Apr 15 2013
You might not be.
I was poking around in Google Shopping results the other day and found that there are some merchants who have partnered with major brands that are essentially “piggy backing” off their name through the Google Shopping Feed.
At first, I thought NewEgg was being just really clever/sneaky by changing their store name in Merchant Center to “New Egg – The Unbeatable Sale.” But what I discovered is that Unbeatable Sale is actually a merchant of NewEgg’s that sells through the NewEgg site (and as a result is covered under a number of their policies).
At the same time, Unbeatable Sale gets to use the NewEgg brand name as their store name in Google Shopping results:
So I started digging more. Turns out Unbeatable Sale is a lot of places:
Well, Sears and Walmart:
And in this case, they get double listings – as they are technically two different “stores” on Google Shopping.
I rooted around a bit more on Sears side, particularly in the Pricefalls.com merchant service as it kept cropping up in the places I was looking. I found that it’s not hard to get into:
Heck, Pricefalls does the Google Shopping feed for you.
One thing I looked at was whether or not Sears.com and the Sears.com-Pricefalls store were selling the same items or not. The answer to that is no (or at least not for the few products I tested) – there are different products being offered.
I’m still not crazy about the overall concept though. The big name retailers get to take up multiple results with partnering merchants, but technically – not really. I don’t consider it to be the same as eBay or Etsy, which are straight up marketplaces. I consider Sears to be Sears, so it seems weird and unbalanced to me.
Maybe you already knew about the duplications, but lately I’ve been noticing how much more they’re appearing in the results. Everyone else out there cool with this? Or no?
Elizabeth supervises the overall search division at Portent, which includes PPC, SEO and Social Media. Check out her modest brag link bundle if you really want to know more: http://bitly.com/bundles/ebkendo/5 She has also written ebooks, is a regular on the Portent blog and speaks on PPC across the USA at various conferences. Read More