Bing’s new Gorilla Marketing “Scroogled” accuses Google of spoiling Christmas for consumers and retailers by favouring the Pay-For-Play Product Listing Ads (PLAs) in results. PLAs are paid Google ads with images and detailed product information, require merchants to bid to be included.
Instead of showing users the most relevant shopping search results for the latest coffee maker you’re looking to buy mum for Christmas, Google Shopping now decides what to show you and how prominently to display what product offers they show, based on how much the merchant selling the product has paid them. Merchants can pay to improve their chances of displaying their products higher than others inside of Google’s shopping even if it’s not better or cheaper for the consumer, essentially misleading consumers.
Google’s own founders complained about search engine bias as being “particularly insidious… because it is not clear who ‘deserves’ to be there, and who is willing to pay money to be listed.”
Bing recently launched a TV commercial in which a woman warns a friend who just bought some cookware that he has been “Scroogled.”
Bing’s renewed commitment to honouring their promises in delivering better, more objectively ranked search results, “search results are one thing; ads are another,” describes the campaign as aimed at helping consumers understand Google Shopping’s practice of “Pay-To-Rank.”