Google announced a relationship with Shopify earlier this year, giving the e-commerce platform’s roughly 1.7 million merchants access to Google Search and other services. Microsoft is now announcing a similar agreement. The business recently announced a collaboration with Shopify to enhance product availability on its own search engine, Microsoft Bing, as well as the Shopping tab on its Microsoft Edge browser and its newly established news service, Microsoft Start.
Shopify merchants will be able to access the connection via an upgraded Microsoft Channel app, where they’ll be able to make a few tweaks to broaden their reach across Microsoft’s network. Merchants’ items will appear as free product listings throughout the Shopping tab in Bing, Microsoft Edge, and Microsoft Start after they have been set up.
Microsoft’s advertising income, like Google’s, may be harmed by Amazon’s expanding ad business over time.
Google has been trying to fix this issue, pitching a makeover of its own Google Shopping service to online marketers during its Google I/O developer conference this spring. The business then outlined its “Shopping Graph,” which would combine information from websites, pricing reviews, and product data to assist shoppers in locating things, determining who had the lowest price, and more.
Last year, Google made it free for merchants to sell their items throughout Google, claiming that the shift had resulted in an 80 percent rise in merchants, with the “vast majority” of them being small to medium-sized firms.
Meanwhile, as the general advertising market has recovered, Microsoft’s search advertising income has increased in recent quarters. Amazon, on the other hand, has been steadily growing its market share. According to The Wall Street Journal, Amazon recorded $14.82 billion in ad revenue in the first half of 2021, up 82 percent over the same time a year earlier.
Both Google and Microsoft’s income might suffer if more people start their product searches on Amazon rather than on the web, bypassing search engines and homepage portals. A relationship with Shopify allows both digital titans greater direct access to a multitude of online inventory to promote and advertise, including many listings Amazon may not have, in order to make their respective products more competitive.
According to Microsoft, Shopify’s connection with Microsoft will allow merchants to launch new ad campaigns and see marketing effectiveness in real-time reporting in their Shopify store. The business also stated that it has further “shopping upgrades” in the works, but did not specify what those new features would be.
Microsoft is just one of Shopify’s numerous integrations disclosed in the last year. It also recently partnered with Spotify to allow musicians to sell products through their Spotify accounts, and it has been developing e-commerce experiences with TikTok.