The 1st WSO to use Google Checkout - Glad it's not a trend

22 replies
I just bought a WSO and was really surprised it allowed payment only through Google Checkout, which I think Google even thought of an an experiment that never caught on.

The whole order process, as we all know, usually takes about two minutes with PayPal. With Google Checkout I had to get my credit card, enter it in, then make the purchase.

Then I got a message that it would take 50 seconds to process the order. When it counted down to zero, it told me:

: The payment processor has not yet informed us about your payment. Your order will be processed as soon as they inform us about the payment.

: If required, any information related to this order will be emailed to you. If you do not see the email in your inbox, please check your spam filter or bulk email folder.

: Please contact (email) for any questions.


The whole process took four times longer than it would have with PayPal or ClickBank. And it did not lead to me getting what I bought, so I'll have to go through extra trouble to contact the seller and then wait longer to get it.

I was also surprised to see another feature of Google Checkout which the consumer may appreciate, yet not us as marketers: The payment process includes an option for buyers to keep their e-mail address confidential from the seller. So any marketer that may use it (if there are any) may only get to build their buyers list if/when the system fails to deliver and the buyers have to contact him/her to get what they bought, in which case the list would need to be manually built.

The good thing out of all this is I have a newfound appreciation of why PayPal is so successful - because they got the ordering process right, because it's fast and it works well.

Warmly,
Dan

P.S. The Warrior is from the U.S., so it wasn't an issue of PayPal not servicing every country. I just wanted to share this message because I think this was the first time I've ever used Google Checkout and other marketers thinking about using it should know about the user experience - and for sure offer another option.
#1st #checkout #glad #google #trend #wso
  • Profile picture of the author Shannon Herod
    You know, I had totally forgotten about Google checkout until you mentioned it.

    I do not think I ever ran one transaction through it myself, or been offered the option to pay with it.

    It was definitely a project from Google that never caught on.

    Talk soon,

    Shannon Herod
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  • Profile picture of the author Dan Klatt
    Funny how life works. Two or three days ago I was thinking how cool it is that Google can do all these different things, the mobile phone operating system, even the G-1 phone for T-Mobile and now others, and if 1 out of every 30 things is a home run, they're doing phenomenally well.

    I used Checkout as an example of something they tried. And here today - I'm the one who got (had) to try it. It may be a viable alternative to PayPal if they tweaked it. And I would envision it not making a dent, or catching on, at least in our community.

    Warmly,
    Dan
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  • Profile picture of the author petereff
    I tried out Google Checkout alongside PayPal for my CV writing services and probably half a dozen people used it without any issues that I am aware of, so I'm not complaining.

    The interesting thing is that once you process £200 worth of orders they give you £50 in Adwords credits which I have just used up - even though it didn't result in any further orders...
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    • Profile picture of the author Dan Klatt
      Thanks for sharing that, Peter. I wonder whether that's an ongoing benefit or was a one-time offer. I didn't know about it.

      I think when they first came out I signed up to be a seller, thinking it would be good to let people pay in the way they preferred, yet I did not take the time to set up everything in their system, or even look at how easy it would be to use their checkout, and for example whether it offers a good recurring payment functionality, which is also easy to cancel people, and for them to cancel.

      I just think of PayPal as being universal and I forget it's actually not.

      Warmly,
      Dan
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  • Profile picture of the author Dan Klatt
    Well, it ended up taking me at least three hours to get what I had expected instantly. I realize sometimes something was wrong with my shopping cart and people paying with PayPal have had problems.

    It's just I'm used to PayPal and either funding purchases with what's in the account, or in one of several checking accounts linked to it, and rarely a credit card. Maybe if I took the time to explore Checkout more I would see I could add bank accounts there, too, and perhaps the issue I faced was as a result of the seller, and what I may call his "clunky" script I bought, which has much room for improvement.

    Thank you for giving me a positive testimonial for checkout. I still believe it is best to give the customer the options he or she would prefer paying with. And my impression is Paypal is unavailable for people from many countries, whereas Checkout is (not sure of that, just an impression).

    Warmly,
    Dan
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  • Profile picture of the author samstephens
    From a developer's point of view, Google Checkout (when I looked at it a couple of years ago) seemed very raw and unplanned.

    For example, it only supports two regions: US and UK.

    And they're both slightly different to integrate with. You'd think with only offering two countries you'd be able to standardize the setup between them.

    It also requires the use of an SSL, where other payment processors don't, and that withholding the email address was a bit of annoyance, too. Great in theory, but in practice? It means you can't do things like email a customer their download link in case they lose it, or email them login details for memberships.

    When I was looking at the backend, I just had the nagging feeling they lost interest half way through, and then just got the work experience guy to wrap it up.

    Some things Google are great at. Some things they just need to buy a company out (eg. YouTube, for example).

    cheers
    Sam
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  • Profile picture of the author Dan Klatt
    Hey Sam,

    That's very interesting. Here I just assumed Google was on top of everything it did and that it must be set up in every country - not just two!

    I seem to remember PayPal not being in 30-60 countries, so I thought of that as where Checkout would shine. I appreciate seeing your impressions on Checkout from a developer's expert eyes.

    Thanks,
    Dan
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    • Profile picture of the author samstephens
      Originally Posted by Dan Klatt View Post

      Hey Sam,

      That's very interesting. Here I just assumed Google was on top of everything it did and that it must be set up in every country - not just two!

      I seem to remember PayPal not being in 30-60 countries, so I thought of that as where Checkout would shine. I appreciate seeing your impressions on Checkout from a developer's expert eyes.

      Thanks,
      Dan
      Hi Dan,

      To be honest, I don't know how it happened - I'd love to be privvy to a few of those internal project and management meetings.

      With a solid company with what seems like money to burn, it seems like they should have been able to present something amazing.

      But it's certainly proof that small developers (even one man shows) can compete with the big boys, and in certain cases, beat them.

      I'm a big believer that world business is built on the backs of small business.

      Having said that, if Google wanted to buy me out, I'd allow them

      cheers
      Sam
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  • Profile picture of the author J Bold
    Just goes to show that Google's not an expert at everything, but dominating at search has given them the dough to try and find other ways to branch out their business.

    So amazing how huge Google became in just a short time.
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  • Profile picture of the author Steve Peters Benn
    I have a few clients whose businesses run on Google Checkout - the system is a poor relation to many other payment methods, and we have had times where clients have had to wait four hours plus for things to clear.

    I would love to see the range of options and the API open up, but right now, Checkout seems like abandonware.
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  • Profile picture of the author Mohsin Rasool
    Hi Dan,

    Thanks for sharing this... I was very hopeful about Google Checkout to be available
    soon in Pakistan as Paypal is not here...but things you experienced there... now i think
    it is not gonna happen ever!

    Mohsin
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  • Profile picture of the author Loren Woirhaye
    Google Checkout has been a non-starter. It's assumption is that
    since Google is great everybody will happily use Gmail and
    all that stuff... and be happy to do commerce through Google.

    It's a flawed bit of branding really. We don't mentally associate
    Google with online payments. That's Paypal's domain - it's even
    in their name... and that's all they do so there's no confusion.

    Anyway, I think Amazon's Pay system may go somewhere -
    I'll bet a lot more people are "real" customers of Amazon than
    of Google, since all Google sells is advertising, coffee mugs and
    stuff like that.
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  • Profile picture of the author Dan Klatt
    I think Sam is spot on in saying Google's big successes come from buying companies already doing something great, like YouTube. Because their thing is search and that's what they do better than anyone, as PayPal's thing has always been, well, "checkouts" ;-), as Loren points out.

    Otherwise, it seems Google's entries have been more "me too".

    They seem to have a mixed record on the things they focus on dominating. I was thinking they really can become the best when they really want to, as in Gmail, and then I remembered Google Documents probably has done very little to hurt Microsoft Office sales.
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  • Profile picture of the author Bev Clement
    Dan, I used it and it is a pain.

    Say I was the seller in this case, you make your purchase, go through all the procedures, and then an email may or may not come to me. I then have to go and say I have sent you the goods, before it will think about releasing the finances. It isn't so userfriendly.

    I have it as an option should people want to use it, and also have 2CO as another option.

    The only good thing about Google Checkout, was for a few months they didn't have any charges on it.

    The bad thing is you can only charge in the currency of the country you're in.
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  • Profile picture of the author Dan Klatt
    Thanks for sharing your experiences, Bev. Two additional reasons I was unaware of for me not to use Google Checkout. And a perhaps helpful reminder about 2CheckOut, which I researched before going strictly with Sam's (*excellent*) DLguard. My impression is 2CO is a good option to have available.

    Warmly,
    Dan
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  • Profile picture of the author Bev Clement
    I have 2CO which works really well with Sam's DLG, well it did once I bugged Sam for help in understanding what I needed to do
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  • Profile picture of the author Dan Klatt
    I realize DLguard works with a lot of payment solutions. I've only used it with PayPal and ClickBank, through HopGuard, which also works very well. I went through a thing with 2CO where I was positive I paid the $50 fee, they had no record of it, and I couldn't find the receipt, so I just ended up not doing, or re-doing that.
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  • Profile picture of the author Mohsin Rasool
    Hi Dan,

    I personally use Dlguard with 2Co and both works flawlessly together!

    Sam has really great product, my all sales are managed by Dlguard through 2Co payments.

    Thank you Sam for your support and quality product!
    Oh yeah new feature of auto-adding to AWEBER is also great! I love that!

    Best Regards,
    Mohsin
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  • Profile picture of the author Dan Klatt
    Hi Mohsin,

    I knew the option was available. I just have not used it myself. (I forgot all about 2CheckOut. I'm glad that option works great for people who live where PayPal does not serve.)

    Warmly,
    Dan

    P.S. It's good hearing from you again, my friend!
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  • Profile picture of the author Ralf Skirr
    I'm sure using unpopular paymentsystems will hurt any sales page's conversions. People buy a lot easier when they can use the payment systems they're used too.

    I always try to offer paypal, cause so many customers already use it.

    Ralf
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