An interesting discussion over on this blog about how Google can use its own advertising platform to promote its own products – and whether it gives its own adverts higher postioning that competitors.
Its not a ground breaking idea – many companies will cross promote their own services, but here the issue is that as the advertising platform is open to anyone to use, is Google abusing its position by deliberatly pushing down competitor adverts.
As a publisher which using Google for some of my income, this also concerns me as the Google algo. is based on performance as well as payment, so it is possible that the Google house ads would appear higher on my websites than Google competitors – and yet pay me less money.
When I worked on WAPDrive some years ago – one of the ways we were able to build such a huge platform of user created WAP sites was the benefit of having 3 million free banner adverts each month on our parent company’s network of websites. That was a huge boost, so I have no problems with cross-promoting services.
Just so long as there is a level playing field and that everyone gets an equal chance to take that top slot on the Google AdWords platform.