Google announced big news, they are doing away with Google Product Search and replacing it with Google Shopping. The name change isn’t a big deal but the model is, they are going from a free product search engine to a paid one!
Danny Sullivan said this is the first time Google is removing a free product to a paid product. And it is upsetting webmasters and SEOs in the forums. I recommend you read Danny’s article for perspective before I share the response by SEOs and webmasters in the forums.
Before I do that, so you know, this feature was first named Froogle, then named Google Products, then named Google Base, then Google Merchants, then Google Product Search and now Google Shopping (although it might have been named shopping also for a period of time).
Great, now they’re going to charge for something that has been free for a very long time. Not that it really performed that well anyway.
Now remind me, why do we all just give Google our content to monetize for free? Google has no content without ours.
Google has, for years now, been consistently developing and promoting their own services to the frequent detriment of prior service partners and query return breadth. This is another logical revenue step… albeit one that Google, also for years, was at pains to label ‘evil’. The humourous part of this are Google’s attempts to deflect, even redefine, pay for inclusion: such behaviour simply underlines that they know they have finally closed the door on their business ‘otherness’. The emperor has no clothes. The sooner Google-centric webdevs acknowledge this and undertake a realistic reassessment of their business model the longer they may stay in business.
My favorite, well, I’ll embed it as an image: