Google hit with record EU fine over ‘Unfair’ Shopping service
- Google fined with a record-breaking 2.42bn euros ($2.7bn; £2.1bn)
- It has been ruled that the company abused its power by promoting Google Shopping at the top of the search results
- The European Commission has accused the company of distorting the market
Updated 28/06/2017 22:37 BST – Statement from Google
Updated 28/06/2017 08:52 BST – Further updates
Google has been hit with a whopping 2.42bn euros fine, a record by the European Commission after it had claimed the company had abused its power by promoting its own shopping comparison service at the top of search results.
The European Commission has given Google 90 days to end what the European Commission has ruled as misconduct due to unfair competition.
The EC stated that since 2008, Google has given prominent placement to its own comparison shopping service, whilst demoting rival comparison shopping services in its search results. Research shows that consumers are much more likely to click on results that are more visible.
Sites like Kelkoo, a European shopping comparison site, are over the moon with the result. Kelkoo which helped bring the case against Google, claiming to have lost out on ten years of development and growth as a result of Google’s practices.
Google’s Statement On The Ruling
“When you shop online, you want to find the products you’re looking for quickly and easily. And advertisers want to promote those same products. That’s why Google shows shopping ads, connecting our users with thousands of advertisers, large and small, in ways that are useful for both. We respectfully disagree with the conclusions announced today. We will review the Commission’s decision in detail as we consider an appeal, and we look forward to continuing to make our case.”
Kent Walker, SVP and General Counsel – Google
Will This Impact Online Sellers?
Google has 90 days to either appeal the EC ruling or end their Google Shopping results from appearing at the top of search results if they don’t want to be fined further.
If you’re an online seller that uses Google Shopping then there is a lot of research on why being at the top of page 1 is so important. It is hard to make a prediction on how drastic the changes will be but there will be a drop in sales for sure.