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Qaya: Google Stores for Digital Creators

Qaya: Google Stores for Digital Creators

Digital creators can now sell online through a Google stores offering called Qaya, which is in beta. Creators can sell their items on Qaya and connect their storefront to the YouTube merch shelf, Google Search, and Google Shopping. But they can also monetize their content in other ways.

Nathaniel Naddaff-Hafrey, cofounder and General Manager of Qaya, announced the new Google stores offering, explaining:

“Creators on Qaya sell everything from trapeze workout guides to wellness training videos, photo filters, beat packs, ASMR read-alouds, productivity templates, knitting patterns and much more.

“We support pay-gated and free products, with tipping, subscription and other monetization types coming soon.”

As a Founder-in-Residence in Google’s Area 120, Naddaff-Hafrey developed Kormo, a jobs marketplace for users in India, Indonesia, and Bangladesh. (Area 120 is Google’s in-house incubator for new products and services.)

He said that after spending time with creators, he consistently heard that building a digital creator business was time-consuming and difficult, which was what sparked the idea for Qaya.

“Google has always invested in creators, from publishers on the early internet to YouTubers today,” Naddaff-Hafrey said. “Our goal with Qaya is to explore new ways to continue this work: giving creators tools to build successful, owner-operated businesses on the web.”

Qaya began live testing in early 2021, and it’s currently focused on the US market. Unfortunately there is no information about pesky details like the cost of using the service or terms of use.

Instead, you have to request an invitation from Qaya’s site “if you’re a creator and you’d like to work together.”

In his post, Naddaff-Hafrey explained that creators use Qaya as the hub for their business activity across the web. “Many link to their Qaya storefronts from their social media bios, and showcase digital products they upload or products and services hosted on other sites. We provide custom yourname.channel or qaya.store/your-name URLs, with payment functionality built in.”

He also said Qaya has customer-management and analytics tools that creators use to connect with their fans and understand sales and content performance.

Interestingly eligible YouTube creators can also promote products from Qaya directly below videos on their YouTube channel. That may say a lot about the intended target market for Qaya stores.

You can read the full post on the Google blog.

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Ina Steiner
Ina Steiner
Ina Steiner is co-founder and Editor of EcommerceBytes and has been reporting on ecommerce since 1999. She's a widely cited authority on marketplace selling and is author of "Turn eBay Data Into Dollars" (McGraw-Hill 2006). Her blog was featured in the book, "Blogging Heroes" (Wiley 2008). She is a member of the Online News Association (Sep 2005 - present) and Investigative Reporters and Editors (Mar 2006 - present). Follow her on Twitter at @ecommercebytes and send news tips to ina@ecommercebytes.com. See disclosure at EcommerceBytes.com/disclosure/.