Reports are emerging of how Google has tied up with Mastercard to track offline purchase behavior and link it to online ads. The data service is presently under testing by Google which will give Google access to offline purchase details, which can be conclusively linked to online searches that have been launched in a window of 30 days prior to the purchase. The secret pact between the two valued at an undisclosed amount that is rumored to be in millions will allow Google to take its data services one notch higher in the face of competition from Amazon.
An official Google statement referred to the data service in general, sidestepping the Mastercard deal. The statement spoke of a tool launched in beta in 2017, that ‘did not have access to personally identifiable information’ and that users of Google could opt out of ad tracking through the Web and App Activity console. Sources privy to the deal disclosed that the deal actually revolved around discussions of revenue sharing from the data service, but the official statement of Google contradicted the reports. Titled rather innocently as ‘Stores Sales Measurement’, the company had announced that it had access to around 70% of cards in the U.S. However, it was unclear what the seventy percent actually referred to; amidst reports that Google was in talks with other payment companies.
Mastercard also evaded the question, as its spokesman Seth Eisen spoke of how the company shared ‘transaction trends’ with business entities to gauge their advertisement campaigns. As per the company statement, the shared information involved sales volumes and size of purchase and did not involve any details of individuals. Google has been making concerted efforts to understand the link between an online ad and actual offline purchase. This will give it greater insights that will priceless to companies that roll out expensive online ad campaigns for their merchandise and products. This began four years back with Google introducing the location history feature. However, for all its innovative nature the tools failed to offer hard facts that could link a sale to an online ad. The present tool is all set to change that with this secret deal between Google and Mastercard.