Category: Search Engine News
Earlier this month, a former Google employee spoke out about his reasons for leaving Google. There wasn't much new information about the inner workings of the company being exposed, but the perspective was helpful. If Google's own employees aren't happy with the direction the search engine company is headed in, that could spell serious trouble for the company.
James Whittaker is a former employee for Google. He wasn't some low-level guy in the company. He delivered four Google Developer Day events, two Google Test Automation Conferences, and was a major contributor to the Google testing blog. He recently spilled the beans about why he left the company on his blog.
In part, he writes:
"The Google I was passionate about was a technology company that empowered its employees to innovate. The Google I left was an advertising company with a single corporate-mandated focus."
That's a problem. A big one. Google did start...
Google has placed a lot of money on the table to make Google+ the social media website of the future. However, things aren't going well for the search giant in this area. It's not a mystery that social search isn't a big hit. Research studies by Pew show that sites like Facebook and Twitter don't drive substantial traffic to news websites and that users, in general, don't like personalized search. In fact, the only people who seem to like personalize search are the folks at Google.
While the Internet search giant tries to continue its foray into social media, there's an elephant standing in the room. Some industries are great for social. If you're a local coffee shop owner, you can stir up quite a buzz about a new blend you've got coming out. You can attract new customers, and you can keep loyals informed with your latest offerings. You might even use social media to advertise special events and functions.
It's time for Google to start thinking. In the next few months, Google will start giving you more intuitive results based on a refresh the company is currently implementing. These changes represent some of the biggest changes the company has ever made to its search engine.
Google isn't scrapping its beloved keyword-based search system. Website rankings are still based on the words the site contains, how often other sites link to it, and many other factors. No, what Google is doing is more of an enhancement. A major one.
The company wants to provide more relevant search results by incorporating something called "semantic search." Semantic search refers to the process of understanding the actual meaning of words. For the last two years, Google has been data mining for hundreds of millions of entities like people, places, and things. It is now able to string all of these entities together and provide context for searches.
For example, if you were to...
On Monday, Yahoo made a move that raised a lot of eyebrows and tempers in Silicon Valley: It filed a lawsuit against Facebook for patent infringement. Yes, you read that right. In the words of Kara Swisher of All Things D, Yahoo's new motto is "If you can't beat 'em — and it can't — sue 'em."
There have been talks about Yahoo starting patent wars with Facebook for weeks now, so the social media giant probably saw it coming.
Apparently, the former Internet heavyweight has over 1000 patents under its sleeve, and it's using 10 of them to sue the social network. In a 19-page lawsuit filed on Monday in San Jose California, Yahoo details 10 counts in which Facebook has violated its patents.
According to Wired, in its lawsuit, Yahoo is seeking "triple damages, pre-judgment and post-judgment interest on those damages, all court costs, and — ka-boom — that Facebook be 'immediately,...
Google has been on a mission to personalize its search results. The mighty "big G" thinks that its users want increased personalization, as well as more local results, in its results pages. However, a new study by the Pew Internet and American Life Project indicates that users don't like all of the attention Google is giving its users. Pew interviewed 2,000 adults in the U.S. and questioned them between January 20th and February 19th of this year. Pew was hoping to better understand the usage patterns and preferences for Internet users when it comes to search engines.
Search Still Popular
According to Pew, search is still one of the most favorite online activities with 91 percent of users doing daily Internet searches. Google's market share is over 66 percent, according to the most recent comScore data. However, 83 percent of the people in the Pew study reported that they use Google to perform Internet searches. That's the good...
Have you ever done a web search for your friend "John Smith" only to find that there are a million other John Smiths out there? There's a John Smith who's a photographer, while there's another one who happens to be a doctor. When you're looking for a particular person with a lot of name doubles, sifting through the irrelevant search results and websites can be a pain.
To address this, Bing launched “Linked Pages". This new feature allows you to tell Bing which search results are about the “real you." For instance, if you're John Smith the photographer and you want your friends to see pages about YOU and not about John Smith the doctor, you can use Linked Pages to mark search results that are relevant to you. This way, when your friends search for your name on Bing, the first search results that they'll see will be the ones that you marked.
How It Works
So how does Bing know who you and your...
Google recently released some interesting data: about 62 percent of all searches on Valentine's Day were done via mobile devices. Google's move to focus on mobile search is paying off, it seems. But, are you cashing in on this opportunity?
Google still has problems determining search intent. That's understandable. You can't expect an algorithm to understand what's inside of your head (not yet, anyway). However, it does know that "Brasa" is a steakhouse it understands that McCormick & Schmick is a restaurant worth dining at (at least, according to the reviews).
Google reported that last-minute searches for flower-related items rose 227 percent during the week leading up to Valentine's Day. Whoops. It looks like there are a lot of last minute hopeless romantics. On "V-Day," consumers were 560 percent more likely to click to make a call than for the week preceding or following the week of...
Do you remember what Google was like before 2007? If you were doing SEO, you did. Back in "the old days," you could get a website to rank in the search engines for any term you wanted just by pointing enough links to the page you wanted to rank. Of course, you had to use anchor text to get it there.
One of the most famous Googlebombs ever pulled off was the infamous George W. Bush incident. At one time, former President Bush's biography was ranked in the #1 spot on Google's search engine for the term "miserable failure.".
Google fixed that problem in 2007, claiming that the Googlebomb issue had been resolved and that websites would no longer be able to game the search engine. This move effectively shut down spammers and SEO experts, preventing them from getting irrelevant websites and pages ranked for any given search term. At its core, the Googlebomb tactic exposed a chink in Google's search algorithm. Google was allowing SEO companies,...
In a surprising study of about 400 people conducted by research tool provider Ask Your Target Market, it was found that most people just plain hate Google's new personalized search results. That's surprising, as Google has really been pushing personalized search for a while now. It seems to make sense on the surface. If you're searching Google (or some other website for you heretics out there), you want results that are tailored to your likes and dislikes. I mean, who really wants search results that are "cookie cutter."
Apparently, the bulk of the population does.
Maybe people sense the non-objectivity of personalized search results. Maybe they don't want to see their friend's Google + profile show up when searching for "lol cats." Maybe users just don't like the idea of Google using personal information to spit out relevant results.
In the survey, about 38.3 percent of the people surveyed said that they...
Google's homemade Internet browser has been heavily promoted by Google since its debut in September of 2008. Google's baby, Chrome, promised to make Internet browsing faster, safer, and all around more enjoyable. It delivered, for the most part, on its promises. Then, Google went a little crazy with its promotional campaign. Ironically, the way Google promoted itself caused Chrome to virtually disappear from the search results.
Market share for Chrome has mysteriously dropped over the last month - down 0.17 percent. A company that tracks market share of browsers suggests that it's because Google effectively banned itself from the search engines.
Net Applications, which tracks some 160 million unique visits per month, reports that Firefox and Safari also saw market share losses in January. Who is getting all of the browser love? Microsoft, if you can believe it. Microsoft's Internet Explorer saw an increase in January of 1.09 percent. This...