Google to offer credit card to US advertisers

Search engine to introduce Adwords credit card for businesses
Kerry Butters

July 22, 2011
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Google is to offer a credit card to selected advertisers in the US in a bid to stay ahead of the competition in online advertising market, according to a Reuters report.

But before anyone gets too excited about the competitive interest rate, ample credit and zero fee, the card can only be used to buy advertising – on Google.

The Adwords business card is designed to ease cashflow worries and still pay for advertising when business finances may be a little tight.

The card is aimed at small and medium enterprises who do not have the resources to launch large campaigns, and is intended to help at times when the extra marketing will be most useful.

“They are resource-constrained and they are often cash flow-strapped,” Google VP of Global Online Sales Claire Johnson said to Reuters on the subject of such businesses.

“Many of them are trying to grow a business without the kind of means that, say, your classic company has.”

Invitations to apply for the card are expected to be sent out by email this week, initially available to a select few for beta testing purposes.

Adwords accounts for a large chunk of Google’s revenue, so it’s important that the company stays ahead of the game as competition from rivals such as Facebook, which is becoming increasingly popular, and the alliance between Yahoo and Microsoft hots up.

The new card is a Mastercard and will offer an ongoing annual interest rate of 8.99%. The amount of credit available will vary by cardholder.

The card is expected to be offered to more businesses as Google examines the spending results of the beta testers.

Credit checks will be carried out by Google and an undisclosed financial partner. Google says that the idea behind the card is to ensure companies can compete in a difficult financial climate.


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