Google is reportedly separating its shopping service after European Union antitrust fine

Google is reportedly separating its shopping service after European Union antitrust fine

Google is reportedly separating its shopping service after European Union antitrust fine

Bloomberg reports that while Google Shopping will still remain part of the company, it will have its own revenue that it will use to make bids for ads on equal terms against rivals.

In June, Google was ordered by regulators to stop promoting its own shopping search results over competitors' and to make changes by September 28th created to give rivals a better chance to compete.

In June, as well as the 2.4 billion euros fine the European Commissioner for Competition, Margrethe Vestager demanded Google change its policy or face a penalty of up to 5% of its average daily worldwide turnover. The plan was previously reported by Bloomberg.

Kent Walker, Google's general counsel, wrote in a blog post, "They reach merchant websites in many different ways: via general search engines, specialist search services, merchant platforms, social media sites, and online ads served by various companies".

The remedy by Google invites other comparison services to auction for display space on Google search results. The EC ruled in favor of the smaller sites and gave Google 90 days to change its search results or be fined further.

Unlike before when Google simply gave you a list of merchandises, all from its own shopping service, the company will now display ads based on auctions with clear marks indicating who won the bidding.

One investigation focuses on the company using its search services to steer users toward its own products and services, while another claims its advertising products restrict consumers' choices.

In a Q&A with journalists yesterday Vestager was asked whether it expects Google to also make changes to how rivals search comparison services are displayed in search results and her response suggests it places the most weight on a combination of both behaviors. Google declined to comment.

The auction is how Google hopes to comply with the European Union's antitrust ruling against the firm in late June, which included a hefty fine of €2.4bn ($2.7bn). "It denied other companies the chance to compete on the merits and to innovate". As a result, about a dozen shopping sites from companies besides Google could become more visible and accessible. But they would also pay Google to take up those spaces.

Alphabet will also continue its appeal.

The fine against Google in June was among the most aggressive moves against a USA technology company taken anywhere in the world.

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