Local Marketing Campaigns, Industry News

Industry IQ: Google and Amazon Battle for Shopper Loyalty, Social Networks Called Out Over Offensive Ad Categories

Shoppers Turning to Google, Remaining More Loyal to Amazon

We know that consumers from the US, the UK, Germany and France use Google at some point during their journey to purchase when shopping online and discovering new products, but over half will start their search with Amazon and a sizeable amount will remain loyal to it, according to a new survey.

Of the 3,100 people commissioned to take part, 85% said they use Google for product ideas and information, compared to 72% for Amazon, making the two comparable in that respect.

Where Amazon really set itself apart, however, was in its ability to retain consumer trust: 22% of respondents said they “won’t look anywhere else if they see a product that looks suitable on Amazon” and that, even if they find the product they’re looking for on another site, they’ll check Amazon first to compare prices, gather more information, etc.


Derogatory Keywords Slipped Through Online Giants’ Fingers

In this week’s cautionary tale of trusting algorithms too much, Facebook, Twitter and Google were all publicly put on notice for inadvertently allowing advertisers the ability to target users associated with unabashedly hateful keywords aimed at black and Jewish people. (We’re not going to repeat them here, but you can use your imagination if you really want to go there.)

The initial story broke last Thursday after ProPublica conducted a test, buying up $30 worth of promoted posts aimed at almost 2,300 people who expressed interest in three specific anti-Semitic categories, that was approved within 15 minutes of being requested.

Each of the three have since either disabled or removed the offensive ad categories and plan to take further action to limit this sort of occurrence happening again. Facebook, in particular, promises that it will better scrutinize and limit categories before they are presented as options for advertising.


Fact: Bing Now Verifies News Stories

Bing searchers now have the ability to fact check search results, following the lead of chief rival Google, which added its own tagging system back in April of this year.

Results will now take ClaimReview markup information from schema.org into account to determine the legitimacy of websites from which stories originate. Labels from fact-checking sites like Snopes, Politifact and others will now appear on most major news stories to either confirm or debunk them, and will be automatically included with the search result, rather than having to click through a link to find out.

Bing’s system, much like Google’s, is far from perfect. Illegitimate stories are still occasionally able to elude the fact checker, dependant largely upon the work that the purveyors of said story have put in to make their website appear more legitimate. For now, Bing says it will do its best to confirm when websites have followed “commonly accepted criteria for fact checks.”


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