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A Checkout System for Your Mobile Site

Use Google Checkout for Your Mobile Commerce Site

Google has spent enormous amounts of time and money developing a whole host of other products and services to go along with its core business of being the top search engine on the planet. Google has a wide panoply of other products and services — most especially Google’s recent acquisition of the mobile advertising company AdMob for $750 million.

Spending that kind of money is a clear indication that Google takes the mobile web seriously, and that it's going to continue to devote significant time and resources to ensuring that its existing products are mobile-friendly.

Google Checkout is easy to set up, and because it piggybacks on Google’s massive network of server farms, it loads quickly — no matter where on Earth your user accesses your m-commerce site from (not an insignificant consideration as billions of people come online via their mobile devices).

Like PayPal, you can use Google Checkout to add a Buy Now button to your site, to set up a simple shopping cart and transaction package in one, or to use Google for the transaction processing in combination with any number of shopping carts that are designed to work with Google. (Some shopping carts can be integrated with PayPal, Google, or both if you want to give customers the option.)

If you use Google Checkout, the downside is that your customers have to already have an account with Google; otherwise, they're forced to create one when they make their first payment.

The Google brand is what your customers will see when they make their payments; the buttons will have the Google logo on them, the color scheme will look like the color scheme that is used by Google, the words “Fast checkout through Google” will appear on the screen, along with a link that says “What is Google Checkout?” and leads to a page that’s all about Google Checkout.

Another possible downside for you may be that Google Checkout doesn't support currency in as many countries as PayPal. What Google Checkout does is to use the conversion rates of the major credit cards to perform the currency conversion, primarily to U.S. dollars, euros, and British pounds sterling.

If your buyers are in one of the supported countries (and the list of countries has grown significantly in just the last year), a currency conversion calculator from Citibank pops up to show them what the price actually is in their local money.

Dozens of e-commerce shopping cart providers have made a special effort to ensure that they integrate cleanly with Google Checkout. If you want to use a more sophisticated shopping cart than the one provided by Google, you can view Google's recommended list of third-party vendors in the Integration Partners section on its website.

If you use Google Checkout, Google offers a couple other features that can tie into your Google Checkout system:

  • Google also has a wizard that allows you to easily convert a Google Docs spreadsheet into a shopping cart and even an embeddable store. If you have a Google ID, you can use Google Docs to create a spreadsheet via the web.

  • Google Analytics allows you to track page traffic information, such as how many users come to your site, which items are most popular, and how much time visitors spend on each page.

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