There is a myth about Google that it replicated Overture’s concept for online advertising and presented it with a cluster of improvements naming it AdWords.
Google is a great company and people love their products and services. In the internet space, whatever Google touched has turned Silver(if not gold).They have their active services in the majority of the fields on the web and they can surely be called as “Crocodile of Internet”(the king of its pond).
So,what’s that one product/service that made Google where it actually is right now ?
Is it ‘Google Images’,’Google News’,’Orkut’,’YouTube’,’Blogger’,’Gmail’,’Google Books’,’Picasa’,’Google Docs’,’GTalk’ or ‘Chrome’ ?
Or is it the “Google Search” that made Google rock its unconventional IPO and create an unprecedented worth(both money and assets) ?
No,it’s not even Google Search….
First of all, the search was already brought into the market by Yahoo! and Excite,much before Google.Google actually wanted to make searching better and relevant but ‘Search’ wasn’t an innovation of Google at all…
And also,becoming a popular search engine from early 2000,beating Yahoo! and dumping Excite was fetching Google nothing but half a million dollars of expense every month with no cashflow into the company.It was a fight of survival for Google at that time.
So what made Google monetize its search engine and the huge traffic coming their way ?
It’s AdWords…an innovation that made Google a multi-billion dollar company.
A solution that redefined ‘Online advertising‘ completely.It proposed a competitive bidding system for advertisers to buy out relevant real estate on Google for certain keywords.
This worked ! Really worked for Google…This basically turned this loss making company into a profit-making empire.
BUT here is a shock statement…
“AdWords wasn’t an innovation of Google.It was Overture’s(later acquired by Yahoo! for $1.63 Bn)”
Overture,then known as GoTo.com,filed a patent in May 1999 for a ‘system and method’ for influencing a position on a search result list.The 43-page patent application details a system in which the advertisers would be able to bid for better placement for ads in search engine results and manage their accounts through a web browser.
Google basically replicated Overture’s concept for online advertising and presented it with a cluster of improvements in the name of AdWords.
In reply,Overture filed a lawsuit against Google for patent infringement. Later on, the matter was resolved outside the court(probably with a relevant share given to Overture in Google’s profits).
The ultimate fact is that Google made AdWords a commercial success but the ‘Idea’ came from Overture(or rather Idealab,which gave birth to Overture services in 1998)