Google has given in to the EU commissioner’s requirements and will officially separate its Google Shopping service from its main search platform.
In June, The European Union has fined Google 2,420 million euros ( 2,140 million pounds), a record amount, for incorrect use of the search engine to direct users to their shopping services.
It was given until September 28 to make changes to Google Shopping, otherwise more fines would be issued, up to 5% of daily income. The company will now ask Google Shopping to bid against its rivals for the ads that are displayed above on the page, according to Bloomberg .
As part of this change, ten ad slots will be auctioned at the top of the search screen to give rival sites a chance to buy space. Google Shopping will also be able to bid for space, but Google will not subsidize it; slots cannot be given away for free.
This will only affect Google in Europe. The company continues to question the findings, even if it makes these changes.
«We are confident that these cases will ultimately be decided on the basis of the facts and that this analysis will show that our product innovations have benefited consumers and merchants and expanded competition,» said Kent Walker, senior vice president and general counsel at Google. on a blog. post last year.
«The surest signs of dynamic competition in any market are low prices, abundant choice and constant innovation.»
Since the beginning of 2015, three separate EU investigations investigating potential antitrust actions by Google have led to allegations.
One investigation focuses on the fact that the company uses its search services to guide users to its own products and services, while another claims that Your advertising products restrict consumer choices . The third concerns Android, which, according to the EU, is unfairly preinstalled with Google services as a search engine.
Google’s problems are reminiscent of an antitrust case against Intel, which resulted in a £ 9 million fine in 2008 and was maintained after the company filed an appeal in 2014 . At the time, the fine was the largest antitrust sanction ever imposed by the EU and gave the government body a chance to show its teeth as a mediator of global online business.