Will AI elevate Google as a shopping search tool?
At its annual Search On event, Google unveiled a number of shopping tools employing Shopping Graph, Google‘s AI-enhanced model that now understands more than 35 billion product listings, up from 24 billion last year.
Google describes the tools as follows:
More Visual Ways To Shop
- Simplified search-based shopping: Searching the word “shop” followed by an item brings up a visual feed of products, research tools and nearby inventory.
- Shoppable looks: A “shop the look” feature displays complementary pieces for building a wardrobe.
- Trending products section: A “Trending Now” feature shows current popular products within a category.
- Shop in 3D: Following the introduction of 3D visuals of home goods to Search, Google is extending 3D visuals to shoes, starting with sneakers. The tool taps machine learning to introduce a simpler and cheaper way to build 3D visuals using a few still photos (instead of hundreds).
Tools To Shop With Confidence
- Buying guides: Buying guides share helpful insights about a category from a range of sources.
- Page insights: The Page Insights feature in the Google app offers context about a webpage being visited or product being researched.
- Personalized results: Shoppers now get enhanced personalized results based on previous shopping habits, and can also describe their preferences, as well as turn off personalized results.
More Personal Shopping Experiences
- Dynamic search filters: Page shopping filters on Search adapt based on what’s trending.
- New discovery tools: Using Discover in the Google app brings up suggested styles based on what items are being shopping for, and what others have searched for, as well.
Throughout the pandemic, Google has rolled free listings, eliminated commission fees and integrated third-party selling tools, including Shopify and PayPal, to support merchants, but has also made investments in personalization, style inspiration, price tracking and localization to elevate the shopper experience.
According to Jungle Scout’s “Consumer Trends Report Q2 2022,” 61 percent of U.S. consumers begin their product hunt on Amazon, 49 percent on a search engine like Google and 32 percent on Walmart.com. Social media channels like Facebook, YouTube, Instagram and TikTok were also found to be playing an expanding role in online product searches.
- 9 new features and tools for easier shopping on Google – Google
- Google debuts new AI shopping tools to compete with Amazon – The Drum
- Google revamps shopping with 3D images, shoppable looks, buying guides and more personalization – TechCrunch
- Over 60 percent of US online shoppers start their product search on Amazon – Insider Intelligence
- Consumer Trends Report Q2 2022 – Jungle Scout
- Search On 22: Google Debuts 9 New Shopping Features – Search Engine Journal
- Can Google become a legit alternative to Amazon for sellers (and buyers)? – RetailWire
DISCUSSION QUESTIONS: Do you see artificial intelligence reinventing Google’s role as a shopping search tool? Which of the new features offer the most promise as a shopping differentiator from Amazon and other product search threats?