Around half of Google Shopping ads are now placed by third-party providers compared to 30% before Google was fined €2.4 billion by the EU for unfair competitive advantages.
New data by Searchmetrics found that Product Listing Ads in the UK, Germany and France were more fairly distributed with 49% coming from external providers. But it’s unclear if regulators will consider this to be enough.
Malte Landwehr, VP Product at Searchmetrics, said: “The share of ads coming onto Google Shopping via external sources has grown substantially from approximately 30 per cent in late 2018, to around half now. However, it’s not clear whether this is going to be enough to avoid further intervention from the EU’s competition regulator.”
Around 35% of these ads were coming from marketing agencies and just 14% came from comparison-shopping services.
In the UK, the top external provider of Google Shopping ads was Productcaster. In Germany, Adference and Smec ranked highest.
“While changes made by Google have meant its own share of ads on Google Shopping has fallen from around two thirds a year ago to around a half at the end of 2019 in all the three markets we analyzed, questions remain regarding the quality of the increased competition this has produced,” added Landwehr.
“Traditional shopping comparison sites were the intended beneficiary when the EU demanded Google open up its shopping service to competitors – but they’re still in a minority in the shopping boxes. It remains to be seen which additional changes the EU will demand and what Google does to comply without giving away more market share than it wants to.”