Hey e-tailers, here is how Google will eat your eBook lunch
5th December 2 Comments
One of the original ideas of the founders of Google was to make content of books searchable. But as they were confronted with a lot of fear from the publishers this project was slowed down and did not really take off. At least until today. Just recently Google decided to invest more into educating the publishers on how they can benefit of the digitalisation of their content. Despite the fact that eReaders like the Kindle have proven that there is a reader market for digital books, Google also launched the new Google Books tightly integrated with its Checkout and Wallet strategy, turning it into an attractive sales channel for publishers. This way Google has already attracted about 30.000 publishers world wide to supply them with content.
So now why is this bad for e-Tailers selling digital content like eBooks? Google just makes them dispensable. Because Google not only shows book results in case of hits for author and titile but even for content that is hidden inside the book. Once you click a result it will display a free extract of the book and offer you to purchase the digital edition right from Google. As you see Google will point the user directly from the search to the transaction without the need to interact with any middle man. They get the rights from the publishers and sell the eBook direct to the consumer.
Having this in mind it becomes obvious of what importance the Kindle and similar devices are for other e-tailers or any large book retailer to ensure a direct channel to the consumer for transactions of digital goods.
Up to Google Books I was under the impression that Google is moving closer to the e-tailers by providing as much information as possible before sending the user to the site. But now they crossed an important line that should indicate how Google will act in other markets where they can source directly from the digital rights owner and avoid the hassle of any logistics being involved.