You are hereGoogle Opens Up Froogle to Local Merchants via Google Base
Google Opens Up Froogle to Local Merchants via Google Base
A post on the Official Google Blog expresses the ability for local merchants to upload their offerings/products to Google Base so that they are listed when users search through Google Froogle Local.
This is the first real application of Google Base as directed by Google and one could see it as direct competition to such online shopping places as Craigslist and Amazon. However, after taking a step back, think about why Google would offer such a service.
First, they create yet another way of gathering the world's (well, for right now, the USA's) data and creating a dependancy for many online shoppers and merchants. Second, with more shopping data available, Google can now collect even more data about a user, what products they are interested in, the merchant locations that they purchase from and apply this data to their AdWords and AdSense programs. Having actual human behavioral data, once in a large enough sample, could trump the accuracy of feeding the "right" advertisements to Google users over keyword density searches.
I, and probably Google, don't expect to see much happening from Google Base entries for this holiday season, but getting this service out there in time for a "holiday season beta test" this year will pay off major dividends in the long run.