Google to Buy UK Finance Comparison Site

Google will announce later today the purchase of price comparison site - a contact at Google informed us this afternoon.

Updated on 7 March 2011.

business men shaking hands over contract

UPDATE: today was sold to Google for GBP 37.7 million.

Google have been showing a growing interest in the financial price comparison sector in recent months, including the launch of their own credit card comparison service currently promoted as a "comparison ad" above regular adwords on Google for premium credit card keywords. (e.g.

However, the purchase of is the clearest signal yet of Google's firm commitment to the UK financial price comparison sector and raises a number of questions:

"What will Google do with", "How will this purchase affect other price comparison sites?" and "What does this mean for other sectors beyond finance?".

Will Google monopolise the more lucrative "ad comparison" positions above the existing high paying Google Ads in other financial sectors?

Will Google purchase more established comparison sites in other sectors, such as Travel?

Will Google keep the brand?

Will Google use information gleaned from price comparison advertisers to their advantage? The information they hold, such as conversion rates and costs, would enable Google to immediately focus their attention on the most lucrative sectors and niche areas within finance.

Will Google continue to support's current strategy of focusing on white label partnerships?

Is it "fair" that Google be in the business of competing directly against the advertisers that make it so profitable? Perhaps the answer to that question is somewhat irrelevant as the fact is they can and they will.

No doubt the picture will become clearer over the coming weeks and months, but we should not underestimate the significance of this news.

Written by at

Further reading...

What are flexible ISAs?

Soon you will have much more freedom when you save in a cash ISA after George Osborne announced the introduction on a new flexible ISA. So what are Flexible ISAs, and how does it differ from the current rules?

How the Help to Buy ISA can get you on the property ladder

Saving up to buy your first property can be difficult, but a new Help to Buy ISA for first time buyers could soon make it a little easier. We explain how it will work and how it could help you get your new home sooner.

What is your new tax-free personal savings allowance?

95% of savers will no longer have to pay tax on their interest after George Osborne unveiled a new personal savings allowance in the 2015 budget. We examine if this change helps you, and how much extra you will earn.

What are the new pension freedoms?

The pension revolution continued today as the Chancellor announced further changes that will give more people than ever greater choice when it comes to their retirement fund. So what has changed?