A lawsuit in the US has pointed to the possibility of Google offering mortgage quotes to its visitors, without them needing to visit a broker, lender or comparison site.
LendingTree, a big US broker, is bringing the case against another company, who they say will be offering Google the technology in order to provide quotes. Google has confirmed that it is “working on a small ad unit test” involving a limited number of mortgage-related searches.
This sort of move is likely to worry some of the big comparison sites Â (both in the US and the UK), as much of their traffic comes through Google, and would likely see a drop off if Google were to offer this up front to their visitors.
It’s likely that Google would actually look to partner with a range brokers, lenders and comparison sites to be able to provide this service, becoming an “aggregator of aggregators”. With Google’s deep pockets and Â technology base, it’s certainly not beyond them, but whether it would fit with their brand remains to be seen.
It’s not the first time Google has looked into the possibility of providing direct quotes to its visitors – last year it ran a test that appeared Â in the UK for people searching for “secured loans” which allowed them to compare lenders. Although that test now appears to be over, it wouldn’t surprise us if this was still on Google’s radar, given the revenues behind price and financial comparisons.
Of course, they’d have to balance the gains they’d make from offering quotes direct with the advertising spend they get through their Adwords ads, of which the comparison sites are big spenders.
photo credit: anima