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Google adds new buy button to search results

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Google on Wednesday unveiled a new feature dubbed “Purchases on Google,” which will let shoppers make online purchases directly from mobile search ads.

“Although we’re still in early experiments with a limited number of retailers, we see ‘Purchases on Google’ as a big step towards helping retailers drive more mobile conversions and win more customers,” Google shopping product management vice president Jonathan Alferness noted in a blog post.

Now, when a shopper searches on mobile for a product they will see an ad with ‘Buy on Google’ text. On clicking the ad, the customer will be taken to a retailer-branded product page hosted by Google where they can check out and buy the product. The “buy” feature will use shopper’s payment credentials linked to their Google accounts.

Google said it’s testing this feature with “a dozen or so” retail partners over the next few weeks. Initially, Purchases on Google will be limited to the U.S. only.

Alongside the ads that show up in search results, shoppers would also get information on product ratings and availability at nearby stores, the search giant noted. The additional information will be available on Google Chrome for Android this month, with iOS support to follow in the coming months.

Using the new Google Voice shopping feature dubbed “conversational search” users will be able to ask Google Now a shopping-related query in natural language, and it will give an answer.

Google also revealed that its Google Now service would now offer location-based information, including on discounts on items and the working hours of stores a user is close to. The service will also be able to access a user’s browsing history to show if the price of a product a shopper has searched for in the past has fallen.

The company also announced details about its soon-to-launch digital payment option Android Pay. Google said that consumers will be able to use Android Pay for both in-app purchases and in-store shopping.