Google Gobbles Channel Intelligence For $125 Million To Make Google Shopping Smarter

February 7, 2013 0

San Francisco — In its unending quest to take on Amazon, Google on Wednesday has snapped up Channel Intelligence, a data service that helps brands and retailers boost e-commerce sales, for $125 million in cash as part of an ongoing effort to improve on the Google Shopping experience.

Channel Intelligence parent company, ICG, announced the acquisition in a post on its blog: Google has inked a definitive agreement to acquire Channel Intelligence, a consolidated company owned by the ICG Group, for $125 million in cash. However, the deal is still subject to the usual formal closing conditions and is expected to be completed during the first quarter of this year.

The blog post further stated: “For over 10 years, we have focused on making it easy for consumers to find and buy products online and help our clients grow their business,” the company said. “We have worked with Google for years, and look forward to the great things we will be able to do together.”

Channel Intelligence technologies are designed to boost the sale of products online. These include where-to-buy, which brands can use to link any digital asset to retail locations, potentially increasing sales by letting consumers know when their favorite retailers offer a product. This is in addition to Facebook platform services, product search engines and shopping engines, the last two of which are aimed at online retailers specifically. It has also developed technology for Google shopping to “maximize sales and Return on ad spend.”

Channel, based near Orlando, Fla., was a launch partner with Google Shopping, and it claims that it “drives $2 billion in sales annually in referred sales online in computing products, home improvement products, appliances, consumer electronics, toys and a variety of other consumer packaged goods.”

Among other things, Chanel Intelligence’s existing customers include Target, Philips, HP and Best Buy, but more importantly it is also a Google Shopping partner, developing a technology that can help maximize sales and Return On Ad Spend (ROAS) with Product Listing Ads (PLAs) — something which the company stresses has become an increasingly important channel for merchants.

In fact, Google is obviously no stranger to e-commerce, offering a Shopping page and a Checkout tool for online merchants. The company said that it is looking to strengthen its business in e-commerce, as heavy hitting rivals such as Amazon become the default search and purchasing tool for customers. Google wants more people using its Google Shopping search engine to find the best deals on products–an area which Channel Intelligence has a good deal of experience in.

Google confirmed the news to various media outlets stating: “We want to help consumers save time and money by improving the online shopping experience,” a Google rep said in a statement. “We think Channel Intelligence will help create a better shopping experience for users and help merchants increase sales across the web.”

Finally, ICG expects the deal to close in the first quarter. All CI services will continue to offer the excellent client service and great performance that our clients have come to expect over the years.