Note : this is just more a little mind wander, rather than an actual Google product, but it’s one that I can really could foresee them producing.
The next thing from Google
I’m thinking out loud here, while looking at my credit card bill earlier today I am really quite surprised that Google hasn’t launched their own version of a credit card. They already have a payment gateway, google checkout, which can provide data on consumer spending processes. But it is limited to online transactions. I’m sure that offline transactions, and the data set of
- what people buy with the cards
- where they are when they purchase
- what time of the day they purchase
- what their average purchase amount is
- frequency of purchasing at a location
could nicely be tied in with the data on into
- how they search (google search)
- use a phone (google voice)
- use broadband
- use email (Gmail)
- use health care (health.google.com)
to allow them to create a comprehensive profile of a person, and ultimately target ads to people with products that now that they like to buy.
Again this would align with their strategy to organise the worlds data. hen I see Google touching into these markets with their recent credit card comparison tool for the UK, I really start to think that it could be a possibility.
We’ve seen how they will soon destroy the GPS industry with their Google Maps Navigation (which I wish would be launched in Europe, so please hurry up) to provide free turn by turn directions to users instead of having to buy rather expensive GPS devices. Google entered the market under the radar so to say, by licencing the content until they were in a position to use their own. Maybe with the comparison tool google will be able to see what offers interest consumers most, is it a low APR , balance transfer or rewards ?
Ways to make the Google Credit Card attractive
I’m sure they will want to avoid another backlash like they got from the launch of Buzz earlier this year, so it will have to be something people are willing to trade their data for. Most cards in the United States don’t have an annual fee, unlike European cards, so I don’t think that a no-fee card would be a such an attractive proposition. And offers of points, air miles and cash back are also quite standard. To catch the attention of the public it would probably need to be something significantl that people wouldn’t mind their purchasing data being analysed. My thoughts that it would be something with an extended credit limit, lower balance, and then tied in with another google product like say a free phone for example. Again these are just some random thoughts on what they could do.
One other possible entry into the market would be to purchase one of the smaller credit card companies, like say Discover.
After Google Credit Card
And what will Google do after that. Could Google start to be an cheap energy provider or even a bank ? Sure why not ! At the end of the day it’s all data.