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Google offers online shoopers the chance to Froogle

NEW YORK - Google, the search engine that has entered the language as a verb, has launched a shopping service giving users access to online merchants selling the products they want.

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The site will be known as Froogle, a pun on the word "frugal". As with Google's original search engine, the results returned from the search will not be able to be bought, and are based on the relevance to the information entered. It will not sell anything, but directs shoppers to merchants.

Froogle will also have sponsored links appearing onscreen to the right of the search results. However, at the moment, these sponsored links are based on Google's existing advertisers.

Froogle tells advertisers: "If you are a Google AdWords advertiser and have requested that Google distribute your ads to our partner sites, they will automatically appear on Froogle. There's currently no way to have your ads appear only on Froogle and not our partner sites or Google.com."

Merchants are likely to be automatically featured on Froogle because of its robot technology that trawls the net. However, they can also send their information for inclusion in searches.

Google is privately owned and is one of the internet's biggest success stories. It draws revenues from selling sponsored links, as well as from lending its technology to other companies, such as Yahoo! and AOL.

The word "google" has become a verb in its own right, with US women being known to "google" potential dates as a way of checking out their credentials.

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