Google Enters Financial Products Comparisons Market

Search engine giant Google has made its entree into an area long dominated by Southern California technology startups: financial products and leads generation. According to Google Thursday, it has launched Google Advisor, a new service to help users find mortgage, credit card, CD, or checking and savings account offers and rates. The new service puts Google into the same space as such local companies as LeadPoint, LowerMyBills, Oversee's, and others. According to Google's FAQ for Google Advisor, it is not yet collecting referral fees for its listings for all categories; however, it did say it is getting paid by mortgage lenders for referrals from customers. Google has been quietly offering up mortgage lead gen since late 2009 via AdWords Comparison Ads; Los Angeles-based Leads360 had said last year that it was providing the back-end, lead handling systems for Google as part of that effort. AdWords Comparison Ads became part of Google Advisor today as part of the launch, and Google mentioned Leads360 in its blog announcing the launch today.