(Via Tech Crunch) It’s Web real estate, of course, but Microsoft’s Ian McAllister lets us know that the sign is up at http://shopping.live.com/. There are some sparse details in the linked “help wanted” posting which reveal that they are building the “the largest structured commercial catalog in the world, ingesting data from hundreds of thousands of retailers” in “50+ international markets.”
Interestingly, the hiring is for the whole MSN Marketplaces team which includes Windows Live Expo and MSN Shopping as well as Windows Live Shopping. Are we having brand confusion yet? Since MSN Shopping reported last Holiday season they had 7,000 retailers (which was, in itself, admirable growth), the folks at Microsoft clearly have high hopes for their new venue.
Of course, Windows Live Shopping isn’t the only new store on the street with high hopes. Colin Barker at ZDNet UK reports on Google Base:
Google is hoping to take on the huge task of moving a significant portion of the European retail sector online.
The company is extending Google Base, its system for advertising and selling goods and services, into a full retail operation, it revealed this week.
Some industry analysts are sceptical about Google’s prospects and have dismissed Google Base as “just advertising”. Another analyst believes that Google Base’s true worth goes beyond just retail and that its “rounded, more complete, approach” will make life tough for companies like Amazon.com and eBay.
Tough for Windows Live Shopping as well, of course. And along with the shopping comes the paying which is pretty good business too, as eBay discovered with PayPal. TechCrunch shows what the kids from Mountain View are up to in that arena with an Exclusive Look At Google Payments. I’m sure they’ll all find the competition bracing.