Google-eBay: Post #3

I was talking to a reporter and it made me think I have to post again. There’s another aspect of this that I didn’t talk about before, which is paradoxical. Google and eBay are coming together to “accelerate” the adoption of PPCall by sharing their infrastructure and potentially distribution (my speculation).

But they are requiring people to have either Google Talk or Skype on their PCs to initiate calls. When Google did its “click to call” precursor-to-PPCall test last year it used VoIP, Inc. as a partner. What users saw was a phone icon that opened a field where users could enter their phone numbers and initiate a call — no software downloads needed.

Most Americans, where this is rolling out initially, don’t have Skype or Google Talk. Skype claims 100 million users (read downloads) globally — most of whom are outside the U.S.; and Google Talk lags quite far behind AOL, Yahoo! and MSN in terms of IM client (with voice) adoption.

So eBay and Google must see this also as a way to generate adoption of Skype and Google Talk. I can understand eBay trying to leverage and promote its Skype acquisition/asset. But if they want to accelerate the adoption of Click to Call (as the basis here of PPCall), why are they throwing up barriers to its use on the consumer side by requiring a software download?

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2 Responses to “Google-eBay: Post #3”

  1. chris rhoades says at

    what is your opinion of how google uses voip, inc as a network to roll out its click to call service? shouldn’t this be a major positive for this small cap company that has the ticker voii?

  2. Dan says at

    The fact is that the kinds of products and services that can be found online are becoming more and more complex. We’re not just buying books on Amazon or EBay anymore; we’re buying TVs, Cars and Boats. For these kinds of interactions, consumers have traditionally shown that they’re more comfortable researching online and buying offline. Click to call service bridges that gap.

    However, it’s important to give customers options that allow them to communicate with the business in a manner in which they’re comfortable. That means giving consumers the choice of either talking to the business via their PC or over a regular landline or mobile phone without requiring that the merchant or the buyer download additional software. Forcing buyers and sellers down a single path creates an unnecessary barrier that could interfere with the sale.

    At eStara, we’ve seen how click to call can increase sales conversions and improve the overall buyer experience, but across the globe we’re seeing that largely, consumers still prefer to speak over the phone than through their PC, that’s why we offer them the choice to connect with the business in a manner that they’re comfortable with.

  3. Google PPCall in UK « Screenwerk says at

    […] What’s also curious about this is that it’s not like the model announced with Skype/eBay, which is currently slated for US roll out next year, and calls for users to have either Google Talk or Skype installed. This is the way Google was previously doing it in its US test. […]

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