Google is getting out of the online comparison shopping market. In a recent e-mail to partners obtained by Search Engine Land, the search giant said it would begin winding down Google Compare this month before pulling the plug entirely on March 23.
Google Compare for Auto Insurance launched in early March 2015 as an auto insurance aggregator designed to help consumers make a more informed decision when shopping providers. If a shopper chooses an insurance provider using the service, Google gets a referral bonus for generating the lead.
The service expanded to include other financial products such as travel insurance, credit cards and even home mortgages which featured partners such as Lending Tree and Zillow.
Google said in its e-mail to partners that the service hasn't been as successful as they'd hoped. After a lot of careful consideration, Google has instead decided to focus more intently on its AdWords business and future innovations that it hopes will better serve customers and provide the best return on investment for financial services partners.
A Google spokesperson confirmed the e-mail's authenticity with the publication, adding that revenue from the service was minimal. One of the likely reasons for its limited success is due to the fact that services are not offered in all states.
It's worth noting that Google is closing the entire operation, not just its US branch. Google has offered a similar service in the UK since 2012.