(cross-posted on the Google Commerce Blog)

Google I/O is here! With tickets selling out in 20 minutes, we know that many of you who wanted to attend are unable to. In an effort to bring I/O to you, we’re live streaming some of the sessions.

Tune in today, June 27th at 4:00 PM PDT to catch our session on monetizing digital goods online with Google Wallet, featuring Google engineers and a guest partner.

For links to this session and all the live streams, stay tuned to our Google I/O site:

And remember that you can get in touch with us year-round. We hold bi-weekly office hours on a Google+ Hangout to answer your payments-related questions. Find the next scheduled office hours at

Posted by Peng Ying, Developer Programs Engineer

Google created a infographic exploring Father’s Day digital trends. Take a look at what we found below; including how instrumental and varied online research is for gift giving.

Advertisers can uncover similar demand insights and query trends using Google Insights for Search.

Posted by Keri Overman, The Google Retail Team

Since its launch in mid-February 2012, the (still-new) AdWords Community, has been a place for advertisers from different parts of the world to come together and exchange ideas, advice and stories with other AdWords advertisers. It's really inspiring to see people sharing their best practices, pointing each other to resources, and enthusiastically helping those who need it.

I’d like to share with you a few comments from our members on their experiences with the AdWords Community:

NehaGupta: “I am happy to be part of Google AdWords Community. I love to discuss about Google AdWords as much as I can as I believe discussions always bring something knowledgeable. Perfect platform for me. I am really excited spending more and more time here instead of Facebook. Everyday I’m learning new things and also trying to take part in conversation by replying answers asked in the forum.”

PPCBossman: “Hundreds of advertisers flow in and out of this Community on a daily/weekly basis and we all roll on as if it's just another day. ...There are great days where lots of problems get worked out, new advertisers are learning and members are achieving personal goals here within the Community. Just as any real life situations, we also have some down times too. ...I have had the most amazing experience here in the last few months, made some great friends, learned a ton and helped a few people along the way as well. But I keep coming back because I know that this Community, Visitors and Members alike, are here for me and guess what, they're here for YOU too! (for the full post click here)

David-nationalp: “I'm here because I'd like the ability to have some input into the direction that Google AdWords goes, understand what's going on in the PPC world, and be able to learn/share knowledge of Google AdWords.”

But the AdWords Community is more than just user discussions; you can find insightful articles (so called “AdWords Wikis”) written by expert users. You can learn more about the some of the community members, such as the Top Contributors, and what it takes to become one. And you can get some reassurance that the Google AdWords Community team is not just a bunch of robots. But instead of taking our word for it, why don't you go and find out for yourself! If you'd like, go ahead and leave us a comment by clicking on the "new message" button directly on the forum.

We are looking forward to see you in the Community!

Note: Currently, the AdWords Community is also available in the following languages: French, German, Spanish, Portuguese, Russian and Italian.

Posted by Zuzana S. Moran, AdWords Community Team

We know it’s a tough world out there for retailers, and that every moment and dollar saved can make a difference. At Google, we’re on a mission to empower retailers as never before with technologies to help you keep up with your hyper-educated customers, complex supply chain communications, distributed teams, training demands, and brand evolution.

Curious to know how Google helped a major retailer address some of these issues? I’m hosting a free webinar on Thursday, June 21, with Jason Breazeale, Senior Manager of Collaboration for international food retailing group Ahold. Jason will talk about how Ahold moved 55,000 employees to Google Apps so that its global workforce could enjoy the benefits of Google’s integrated, web-based platform for communication and collaboration. I hope you’ll join us. Please register at this site.

To help you gain a better understanding of how retail companies like Ahold and others are working with Google Apps to solve their real-world challenges, here’s a look at some of those issues and how we’re helping retailers move forward:

Better serving your customers
Gmail, Google Docs, Google Drive, Google Calendar and Google Sites make it easier for your associates to communicate and share information via mobile devices and store kiosks. You can also build community and share information with Google communication and social tools such as Google+ Hangouts on Air.

Driving agile processes
Google Docs, Google Drive, and Google+ Hangouts enable anytime, anywhere collaboration among product designers, suppliers, and manufacturers. You can also conduct online, real-time meetings with virtual teams using Google+ Hangouts, and standardize communication and collaboration platform between stores and corporate with the Google Apps suite.

Streamlining associate onboarding and training
Create an HR portal with Google Sites to share forms, while tracking recruiting and hiring with Google Docs, Spreadsheets, and Forms. Deliver anywhere, any device, on-demand training with a Google Sites training portal and Google+ Hangouts on Air, and track training progress and compliance with Google Forms and Spreadsheets

Check out our site at to explore more of these issues and understand Google’s solutions more deeply. You’ll also read how real customers are using Google Apps to solve these real-world world challenges.

And don’t forget to register for our webinar featuring Jason Breazeale of food retailing giant Ahold, who will discuss how his company has benefited from its move to Google Apps.

Posted by Rhonda Stites, Head of Retail Industry, Google Enterprise

I recently asked my teenage sister to tell me what’s hot and what’s not in beauty and fashion. With a 16-year age gap between us, I consider her my informant on all things trendy and cool. On beauty she had this to say, “It’s better to wear less makeup than, like, a lot of makeup, but neon colors are cool too and, like, don’t just do your hair straight because that’s boring, you know?” I said I didn’t know. But in true teenage fashion she told me she would not elaborate any further by giving me a slight eye roll and turning her attention back to her mobile phone. So in order to find out more on the latest beauty trends, I decided to do what I do best and head online to research.

Starting with search, I quickly found that there are a lot of exciting beauty trends to explore. For instance, when it comes to ‘non-boring’ hairstyles, the sock bun is all the rage. As the name implies, you hide a (preferably clean) sock in your in your bun to give it more volume.

A bolder, edgier hairstyle that is also popular in search right now is the Skrillex hairstyle. This image search showcases the Skrillex hairstyle better than I ever could with words.

The natural makeup look is also gaining in search popularity. I learned the key to the natural makeup look is to wear makeup so discreetly that it does not look like you are wearing makeup at all. However, in what seems paradoxical to being ‘natural’, neon nail polish and coral lipstick are also seeing a surge in search interest. I guess there are exceptions to every rule, especially when it comes to beauty.

I perused makeup, hair, skin care and more in my search for beauty information and found it tough to make online purchase decisions with the absence of the ability to test products first. Fortunately, beauty sample subscriptions have emerged as a solution by allowing consumers to subscribe and try a variety of sample-size products before making a substantial beauty investment. I further fueled this trend by searching for and ultimately signing up for two beauty sample programs.

With all the beauty information housed online there are many ways for retailers to showcase the beauty products. For someone like me who dove into search relatively clueless, the best search experience was when a retailer answered my search queries with beauty tips, advice, product ratings, and in-depth product information. Retailers leveraging ad formats such as product extensions and sitelinks helped boil down a vast amount of beauty information to help me find beauty answers quickly.

The online advertising opportunity extends well beyond search. Beauty aficionados head to YouTube in droves to seek and post videos related to beauty products and trends. For instance, the sock bun that is hot in search also showcases 1,500 related videos on YouTube. This large amount of video content provides allows beauty retailers to advertise to a highly engaged and targeted audience. And to top it all off, there are an uncountable number beauty blogs, magazines, and columns with devout followers, further extending the opportunity for retailers to advertise beauty products online through the Google Display Network.

After all my research, I am happy to report I am keeping up with the latest beauty trends with a natural makeup look, neon nails, and the occasional sock bun. With that, I think I can consider my quest for the latest in beauty trends complete. And thank goodness, because when I asked about fashion trends, my cool and trendy teenage sister only had to give me a single look to let me know that it is a research project I badly need to tackle next.

Posted by Kristin Patterson, The Google Retail Team

(cross-posted on the Official Google Blog)

Online shopping is great for many reasons, but most of all it’s a convenient and fast way to turn your intent to buy that new pair of running shoes, for example, into an actual purchase. But shoppers tell us they’re often nervous about buying from online stores they don’t know. We created the free Google Trusted Stores program to help solve this problem. When shoppers see the Google Trusted Store badge, they know in a snap they’re shopping with a reputable retailer and they can feel confident making an informed purchase.

We’ve been testing the program since last fall with about 50 online merchants and more than 10 million orders. It’s working even better than we hoped, generating positive feedback from shoppers and increasing sales for merchants. Starting today, Google Trusted Stores is open to all U.S. merchants who want to apply.

Helping shoppers choose stores they can trust
When shopping online, you may come across the Google Trusted Store badge. Hover over it and you’ll see a “report card” which shows “grades” for that merchant’s shipping and service, including more precise metrics about what the grades mean.

The Google Trusted Store badge and report card
This badge is only awarded to online stores that deliver a great overall experience, so even if you haven’t shopped with this merchant before, you can easily tell if they are trustworthy, ship quickly and reliably, and offer exceptional customer service. If there’s a problem with your purchase, we’re here to help. When you buy from a Google Trusted Store, you can opt in to get up to $1,000 lifetime purchase protection per shopper. And our dedicated customer service team is there to work with you and the merchant to assist in resolving the issue.

Helping merchants demonstrate their excellence and earn new business
Google Trusted Stores helps online stores attract new customers, increase sales and differentiate themselves by showing off their excellent service via the badge on their websites. Soon the badge will also appear on ads and in Google Shopping results.

Google Trusted Store badge on AdWords
Over the last nine months of the pilot, our tests show that participating in this program can help merchants big and small. For example, Wayfair, the largest online-only retailer of home goods and one of the top 50 largest online retailers as ranked by Internet Retailer, increased sales* on its site by 2.3 percent with Google Trusted Stores. And Beau-coup, a specialty online favors and gifts retailer, saw an 8.6 percent increase*. Take a look at our merchant success stories to learn more about how Google Trusted Stores has had a positive impact on website conversion rates and average order sizes for online retailers.

Google Trusted Stores is entirely free, both for shoppers and for online stores. We’re still testing the most helpful ways to display Trusted Stores information to shoppers, so you may see different versions, or none at all, while we conduct experiments. If you’re a merchant and would like to participate in the Google Trusted Stores program, please apply.

Posted by Tom Fallows, Group Product Manager, Google Shopping

*Increased sales percentages are based on a combination of uplift in conversion and average order size.

(cross-posted on the DoubleClick Advertiser Blog)

There has been explosive growth in ad technology over the last 20 years. From each of our perspectives -- whether you are an agency, an advertiser, publisher or a technology provider -- we can all still see unprecedented opportunities as the digital world continues to grow and diversify.

We believe that as an industry, we’re on a common digital journey and that the next wave of innovation in ad tech will come from us all working better together.

However, like all great opportunities, there are challenges and questions, such as:
  • How do we unlock the next $50 billion of opportunity for digital advertising?
  • How do we deliver those immersive, interactive experiences to today’s empowered consumer demands?
  • What do we, as part of the ad tech ecosystem, need to build to create even more value for our clients and consumers?
On June 5th we’re hosting DoubleClick Insights to start exploring some answers to these questions. Senior leaders from top agencies, advertisers and publishers will help lead the conversation -- and you’re invited to join via the live stream! Register here.

The agenda will include topics such as:

Adapting to the Empowered Consumer:
Neal Mohan, Vice President, Display Advertising at Google will be joined by David Kenny, Chairman & CEO, The Weather Channel Companies, and James Pitaro, Co-President, Disney Interactive Media Group, to discuss how technology is being used to deliver new content and advertising experiences to consumers.

If We Build It, Will They (Consumers) Come?
Terry Kawaja, CEO and Co-Founder, Luma Partners (and creator of the now legendary LUMAscape chart) will lead a conversation about the ad tech ecosystem, and what it needs to do next to add value for agencies, publishers, marketers – and ultimately consumers. Terry will be joined onstage by:
  • Omar Tawokol, Chief Executive Officer, BlueKai
  • Greg Stuart, Global CEO of Mobile Marketing Association
  • Kurt Unkel, President, VivaKi
  • Shishir Mehrota, Vice President of Product Management, YouTube
Outside the Box: Technology = Creative Friend or Foe?
Technology is supposed to make the life of a marketer easier. For our final conversation, we’re going to focus on the question of: Is this technology exploring resulting in better marketing? Or, is it just resulting in mediocre creative and complexity for both consumers and marketers? Karim Temsamani, Vice President - New Products and Solutions, Google moderates the conversation with leaders from creative agencies, iconic brands and publishers including:
  • Brad Ruffkess, Global Connection, Coca-Cola
  • Mike Lowenstern, Managing Director of Digital Advertising, R/GA
  • Peter Minnium, Head of Digital Brand Initiatives, IAB
  • John Caldwell, Chief Digital Officer, National Geographic
The live stream will start on June 5, 2012, at 9:00 am PDT, and you’ll be able to watch from your computer, tablet, or mobile device. To learn more about our highlighted speakers go to the Speakers page on our site.

Please register for this virtual event by visiting the DoubleClick Insights Live Stream page.

DoubleClick Insights
Tuesday, June 5th 2012
9:00am - 1:00pm PST
Set event reminder today

Following us on Google+ or Twitter (@DoubleClick and @DoubleClick_pub)? Use the #dclkinsights tag as you're watching the event to ask questions or share comments during the event.

Posted by Stephen Kliff and Scott Brown, DoubleClick Marketing