Google enhances shopping experience for search

Dive Brief:

  • Expanding on new features announced last month, Google has released updates to its shopping experience in search with a more visual feed of results for desktop. Additionally, new dynamic filters have been added to narrow down search functionality for products and the ability to view a product without leaving the results page, according to details shared with Retail Dive.
  • The updated desktop feed will show more products, brands, articles and videos when users add the word “shop” to a search for clothes, electronics, beauty products or home goods. Additionally, the new filters include options such as brand, retailer, what’s on sale, department, size, material, color, products nearby, and more. The filters are dynamic, meaning they can be updated with options based on what a user is searching for at a particular moment, such as “iced coffee machine,” “single cup” or “drip” when a user is searching for coffee makers.
  • Google’s updates — currently available in the U.S. — will also allow shoppers to have a dual-screen style search, where they can read the information on a specific product without having to leave the search result page.

Dive Insight:

Google’s latest announcement demonstrates the tech company’s dedication to providing consumers with a more user-friendly shopping experience, putting an emphasis on price comparisons and informed buying.

“Shopping is about so much more than just buying — it’s also about browsing, researching, and narrowing down your options to get the right product at the right price,” said Lilian Rincon, senior director of product at Google, in a blog post. 

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Google search results page with a red ceramic vase product.
Google allows users to view details about a product without leaving the search results page.
Permission granted by Google
 

The updates add onto new features rolled out in September, which included a 3D sneaker functionality, buying guides for specific product categories, and a “shop the look” tool with curated styles. At the time, Rincon told Retail Dive that while Google is not a retailer or marketplace, its goal is to connect shoppers with merchants regardless of where the final purchase occurs.

These changes to the shopping functionality on Google come as the holidays start to roll in, marking the most important quarter for retailers. A study released this week by Deloitte found that higher-income shoppers plan to spend less this season, while low-income consumers plan to spend more. While overall spend is expected to be on par with 2021, Deloitte noted that shoppers are feeling the impact of higher prices.

Google may play a role in how shoppers find their gifts this season, according to data from Bluedot. A study by the group released last month found that 22% of respondents will search on Google for gift inspiration.

The company’s improved features also arrive just as shoppers may already be on the hunt for deals on gifts. Thirty-eight percent of consumers surveyed by Deloitte said they plan to shop earlier this year and 23% said their holiday budgets will be spent by the end of October.

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