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Is Google Scared? Reactions or Planned Development
TheMadScientist




msg:4063899
 11:40 pm on Jan 19, 2010 (gmt 0)

When I look at some of the changes made at Google I wonder if they've changed their mentality from 'market leader', 'standard setter everyone wants to follow', 'simple and friendly' to 'what are we going to do to continue holding our visitors, revenue and market share'?

Twitter Feeds
Many here have pointed out they are mostly garbage. We're these planned to be integrated all along, or were they integrated as a reaction to Bing?

Fading Home Page
Come on... Was this designed and planned well in advance, or was it a reaction to Bing being way 'cooler' than Google... (I have an idea Bing may be 'the choice of a new generation'(or one of them), because I actually didn't use it until a high school student said they tried searching for something on Bing and Google like it was expected for them to use both.)

Search by Submitting a Photo
Sounds like the use of some technology Microsoft developed I read about not too long ago, but don't remember where to cite the source. (Maybe someone else can shed some light on what it is. It had to do with Micorsoft's SilverLight technology.)

Jazz Interface
Long-term plan, or as Brett says, Bing Envy IOW a knee-jerk reaction?

Personalized Results
People are against behavioral ad targeting, do they really think people want what are essentially behavioral search results by default?

Honestly, I think Google's started reacting rather than leading to some degree, because they're are definitely getting 'out cooled' by Bing just about every step of the way...

And what's even more interesting to me is they're not being chased by some start-up or someone they can buy out. They're being hounded and chased for market share by a company that crushes them in annual revenue and already has a worldwide user base, so I think they're going to have to keep doing it to keep up with the revenue pace they've set for themselves, because there's not much room for Google to go anywhere, except down...

Matt Cutts used to say when he asked people what they liked about Google they often said it was simple and easy to use... Maybe he should have been asking what they liked about the competition instead?

2010 could be an interesting year in the search market, me thinks.

 

tedster




msg:4064038
 6:06 am on Jan 20, 2010 (gmt 0)

I see what you are getting at. There definitely seems to be a different feel to Google's actions since Bing launched. If you're right, then at least it shows they are not complacent about their current market dominance.

zett




msg:4064048
 6:23 am on Jan 20, 2010 (gmt 0)

Google _is_ feeling the hot breath of Bing, and this is mostly a result of a company losing focus. It's just natural though. Think of all the people working at Google - they can't just say "uh, it's perfect" and continue doing nothing. They want to work, and they do work, and they launch stuff that is not good (or sometimes plain evil).

My two cents anyway.

tedster




msg:4064051
 6:31 am on Jan 20, 2010 (gmt 0)

they launch stuff that is not good

They've been doing that since the beginning - perpetually in beta.

Actually, that's not a bad business model at all - if you also continually upgrade. Sometimes companies shoot themselves in the foot trying for perfection in one development cycle. It's usually better to make your mistakes quickly - and then spot and fix them quickly, too.

martinibuster




msg:4064068
 8:04 am on Jan 20, 2010 (gmt 0)

It's not just the hot breath of Bing. Google poked Apple with a stick and now Apple is rising up and fighting back. Apple recently purchased a mobile ad network, is in talks with MS to boot Google from the iPhone and is reportedly developing a mobile search engine [webmasterworld.com].

Apple and Google have terrific mindshare, but I think Apple has a deeper relationship with their users. When was the last time you saw a Google logo as a tattoo [flickr.com]? Apple stickers on autos are common. Google stickers are rare. In fact, I have never seen a car with a Google bumper sticker or window sticker on it. People use Google but people don't have an emotional connection with Google.

People not only use Apple products, they love Apple the company. There is an emotional connection to Apple products. Consumers love Apple so much they even tattoo the logo onto their body [flickr.com]. That is mindshare.

Google has reason to be concerned. Apple may have a stronger brand.

[edited by: martinibuster at 8:30 am (utc) on Jan. 20, 2010]

whitenight




msg:4064069
 8:06 am on Jan 20, 2010 (gmt 0)

If you're right, then at least it shows they are not complacent about their current market dominance.

lol, my goodness, tedster, you spin Gorg's recent dismal incompetence way better than any of their employees do.

Actually, that's not a bad business model at all - if you also continually upgrade.

Really? Seriously?! MUST we have this convo every 3 months?!

Please name 3 "innovations" of Gorg that have been profitable outside of Adwords.
I'll wait....
Err..ba ba ba...about to say "Youtube"?
I said profitable, NOT monetized (after 3 years)
I'll wait some more....

Google _is_ feeling the hot breath of Bing, and this is mostly a result of a company losing focus. It's just natural though. Think of all the people working at Google - they can't just say "uh, it's perfect" and continue doing nothing. They want to work, and they do work, and they launch stuff that is not good (or sometimes plain evil)

Yes. Plain simple and truth.

-----------------------

Must we spend every other week "justifying" a company that reached its peak in 2007?

But wait, what about Android and mobile tech?!
Good luck beating Apple who have ACTUAL creative geniuses and not boring ole self-proclaimed programming "geniuses'.

Have I mentioned their inept leadership yet this month?
-- That either doesn't know step #1 about public speaking and hasn't actually LED Gorg into any new ground-breaking territory since taking over?
(Whether he actually wants to take over the world or is just a chronic foot-in-mouth mis-speaker, you choose)

At the first HINT of some real competition (Bing!), Gorg has shown their true colors and completely given up the FACADE of being "let's make the world a better place" innovators.

It's sad.

levo




msg:4064080
 8:30 am on Jan 20, 2010 (gmt 0)

Google poked Apple with a stick and now Apple is rising up and fighting back.

Indeed.

Apple, Microsoft Discuss Giving Bing Top iPhone Billing [webmasterworld.com]

BeeDeeDubbleU




msg:4064095
 8:58 am on Jan 20, 2010 (gmt 0)

Is it not the case that market share suggests that google need not be too concerned with Bing just yet?

tedster




msg:4064185
 1:17 pm on Jan 20, 2010 (gmt 0)

Here are two bits of news that might be creating fear in Happy Town:

Apple in Talks to Make Bing Primary Search on iPhone

The person familiar with Apple's thinking says Apple has a "skunk works" looking at a search offering of its own.

[webmasterworld.com...]


wheel




msg:4064201
 1:36 pm on Jan 20, 2010 (gmt 0)

Is it not the case that market share suggests that google need not be too concerned with Bing just yet?

Market share in this industry can turn around inside of a year.

I don't think it's beyond belief that given the right conditions, Google could lose a majority of it's traffic in that short period of time. Something cool and viral can have a big effect.

For example, people start using bing on their iphones. Let's say it's cool, so they let their friends know. Then everyone's running bing on their phones. Then they switch over their home PC's. Google's toast.

BeeDeeDubbleU




msg:4064347
 4:58 pm on Jan 20, 2010 (gmt 0)

Market share in this industry can turn around inside of a year.

Of course it can but my point was that there are no real signs of this happening just yet. I would like to see the gap closing but it's not really happening is it?

TheMadScientist




msg:4064389
 5:31 pm on Jan 20, 2010 (gmt 0)

Market share in this industry can turn around inside of a year.

Yeah, that could be one of the most interesting points of the discussion... Google could theoretically lose market share as fast as they take it from other sites with an algo change, because unlike most products where there is an 'expected use' time period no one who uses Google (except shareholders) has a vested interest in Google.

What I mean is: You don't go search engine shopping and try to find one you're going to be happy with for a couple of years. You don't have to wait for it to wear out or crash to use a different one. It's not a product you buy or have to make any investment to change, so if people are 'turned off' to Google, or 'turned on' to Bing the shift could be very sudden and rapid, and, unfortunately for Google, results aren't everything...

TheMadScientist




msg:4064406
 5:57 pm on Jan 20, 2010 (gmt 0)

Is it not the case that market share suggests that google need not be too concerned with Bing just yet?

I think if they wait for market share to decline, it's too late... If they wait for decline to do anything, then whatever they do is definitely reactionary rather than leading, which is not ever a good place to be in. It's like playing chess and having your opponent 'force' your moves by keeping you in check... It's one of the easiest ways for you to lose if you allow it to happen. IMO It's always better to lead and force others to follow and whether they have the market share right now or not it seems to me this is exactly what Bing is doing to Google, not the other way around.

I read somewhere on average, at a store, a person has to be exposed to a product 9 times before purchasing it and online the number is much higher. How long have those Bing television commercials been running and how many times on average do you think people have seen them to date? Wait until people have seen 25 or 30 different Bing commercials... Then the numbers may be more telling.

Do you really think Microsoft put a big bulls-eye on Google, dumped $Millions into the development of a search engine and is just going to pack up shop and leave? They're quite possibly the best marketing company in the world and it sure doesn't look like they're going anywhere to me.

[edited by: TheMadScientist at 6:12 pm (utc) on Jan. 20, 2010]

randle




msg:4064416
 6:09 pm on Jan 20, 2010 (gmt 0)

Twitter Feeds

Fading Home Page

Search by Submitting a Photo

Jazz Interface

Personalized Results

You can add onto this list universal search, the Vince update (or the Eric Shmidt "brand is better" update, whichever name you prefer) and a whole bunch of other bizarre changes that have negatively impacted this users experience.

However, the thing I have trouble coming to grips with is they have all the data they need to determine if these things are working as intended. They wouldn't make these changes, analyze the data, see things taking a turn for the worse, and then leave them in place.

Thats the part I don't get, some how, some way these things have to be making them more money.

TheMadScientist




msg:4064424
 6:21 pm on Jan 20, 2010 (gmt 0)

However, the thing I have trouble coming to grips with is they have all the data they need to determine if these things are working as intended.

I think you may have hit the nail on the head in your statements:
User Experience
Making More Money

The first leads to the second, but the converse does not necessarily apply...

If they changed their focus from User Experience to Making More Money, then quite a few of the changes might be explained fairly easily and focusing on Making More Money can be detrimental to User Experience, which IMO is a long-term loss, because when you lose the visitors you lose the money and the ideas don't seem so good any more.

Apple and Google have terrific mindshare, but I think Apple has a deeper relationship with their users.

IMO This is definitely not only a possibility, but likely for the 'vested interest' reason I stated previously, and truthfully, I switched search engines without buying a new computer... I still own two Macs, and would miss them if I had to switch to a PC for some reason, but don't miss the search engine I switched from a bit. I still find what I need using the one I switched to...

CainIV




msg:4064587
 10:41 pm on Jan 20, 2010 (gmt 0)

I said profitable, NOT monetized

Nor original, or unique.

I have nothing overall against the "gorg", business is business, and we pay to play.

But it would be nice to see some shaking of foundations. Certainly is not sitting back and watching what others do at this point.

whitenight




msg:4064598
 11:03 pm on Jan 20, 2010 (gmt 0)

Also. now in retrospect, everyone could make the logical conclusion (which many of us mumbled about then)
that the completely out of character public release and fanfare of sandbox.google.com (aka new shiny uber-algo "Caffeine")
was a reactionary PR stunt (aka FUD)
to limit the amount of press and webmaster attention that Bing! was receiving at the time.

By definition, it wasn't even 6 months away from public consumption,
but Gorg sure did pounce at "unveiling" it as Bing dominated headlines and awareness.

arizonadude




msg:4064614
 11:42 pm on Jan 20, 2010 (gmt 0)

By definition, it wasn't even 6 months away from public consumption,
but Gorg sure did pounce at "unveiling" it as Bing dominated headlines and awareness.

All the fans like to tell themselves that Google is not worried about Bing, but you can bet they are very worried and have every reason to be.

Microsoft is a Juggernaut when it comes to marketing and Google is not.

BeeDeeDubbleU




msg:4064627
 11:55 pm on Jan 20, 2010 (gmt 0)

Microsoft is a Juggernaut when it comes to marketing and Google is not.

So what's kept them? Google have been at the top now for over ten years.

TheMadScientist




msg:4064631
 12:00 am on Jan 21, 2010 (gmt 0)

So what's kept them?

What kept Apple for 20 years?
IMO It doesn't matter as much why Microsoft didn't, what matters is now they are...

Microsoft is a Juggernaut when it comes to marketing and Google is not.

Apple's not doing too bad these days either...
I think G may be in for a bit of a fight.

Can you imagine if they both take aim with some negative press like Apple's been doing to the PC?

Also. now in retrospect, everyone could make the logical conclusion (which many of us mumbled about then)

Sure seems like it to me.

I think quite a bit of what they did in the last 6 months was to divert attention to or from certain issues. IMO It looks that way even more so now than it did even at the time they were doing it when looking back at the timing of things...

J_RaD




msg:4064649
 1:15 am on Jan 21, 2010 (gmt 0)


So what's kept them? Google have been at the top now for over ten years.

google has not been at the top for 10 years, i can remember still using excite back in 01/02

HuskyPup




msg:4064670
 1:54 am on Jan 21, 2010 (gmt 0)

So what's kept them? Google have been at the top now for over ten years.

Oh no no no no no...Google was an algo beta invite webmaster driven test!

It was probably the first viral, correct me if I am wrong, mass promotional testing ground...I was there, I was heavily involved in what happened.

Bing is not doing the same thing, they are keeping it "in-house" whereas Google basically "let it go wild" and watched what happened as testers chucked loads of crap at it and watched the consequences and then refined them.

It was a pro-active playground for some of us who understood what they were trying to achieve and far superior to anything else on offer.

Google is still the intelligent bully of the playground for the moment, Bing has some serious flaws that it needs to address.

One subject no one has addressed is that of AdSense...many advertisers are comfortable with Google...errr...what are Bing's and Yahoo's alternatives for PUBLISHERS outside of the USA/Canada?

If there is a a solution, please post.

drall




msg:4064688
 2:16 am on Jan 21, 2010 (gmt 0)

I see Bing promotion all over the place, on the Jay Leno show last night even. I think Google is more worried about Bing then most think.

Once Yahoo starts serving Bing results in the next year (this is what gave google it's start) and if iphones serve bing things could shift very quickly and that has to be of great concern for Google.

whitenight




msg:4064689
 2:23 am on Jan 21, 2010 (gmt 0)

One subject no one has addressed is that of AdSense...many advertisers are comfortable with Google...errr...what are Bing's and Yahoo's alternatives for PUBLISHERS outside of the USA/Canada?

If there is a a solution, please post.

You answered your own question, earlier Huskypup.
"Bing is not doing the same thing, they are keeping it "in-house"

Once the Yahoo/Bing merger is finalized, I'd expect a rather quick rollout of "BingSense" or whatever name they give it.

And yes, when THAT happens, we'll be talking about the "Web 3.0" balancing of Gorg and Bing in marketshare.

BillyS




msg:4064690
 2:23 am on Jan 21, 2010 (gmt 0)

Search by Submitting a Photo

Google has been working on this for years. It's pretty easy to find on the web. Not sure what MS has been doing.

TheMadScientist




msg:4064719
 2:59 am on Jan 21, 2010 (gmt 0)

One subject no one has addressed is that of AdSense...many advertisers are comfortable with Google...errr...what are Bing's and Yahoo's alternatives for PUBLISHERS outside of the USA/Canada?

Actually, I was thinking about search users not the income from those search users. You're talking about the monetizing of the traffic, not the traffic itself, which IMO is a different question...

Also, IMO Microsoft really doesn't need to monetize the traffic beyond the cost of search operations to hinder Google, because every visitor Google looses cuts into their bottom-line and therefore hinders Google's operations, but Bing is not in exactly the same situation. The short-version of my thought in-other-words is: IMO Bing can run at break-even (or even a slight loss) for a period of time (possibly a long one), because of Microsoft's alternate source of cash-flow, while Google cannot, which creates an uneven playing field in Bing's favor.

Google has been working on this for years. It's pretty easy to find on the web. Not sure what MS has been doing.

The same thing the other way around... I read about what Microsoft had been doing with image comparison, but not Google, so this one may not be reactionary at all, but rather pre-planned.

zett




msg:4064772
 4:16 am on Jan 21, 2010 (gmt 0)

In fact, it would be pretty easy for Microsoft to turn around this game. Just develop products with webmasters and consumers in mind (i.e. serve their needs). This could be, for example, an alternative to Analytics, a more transparent version of Adsense, search queries that get quickly anonymized (they did that one recently) or not stored at all. Then get the word out to the relevant target groups (webmasters, consumers) and see the traffic roll in.

Google is hampered by their own product vision. They think that data is everything, and that they have to build products that spy on people and that are monetized through advertising only. Now, until now this might have been a strength (because it allows you to offer free products), but once sentiment of the target group changes, e.g. privacy getting more important, you're in trouble because your model crashes. On the other hand, IF you build your business with this limitation in mind (i.e. respecting the mind shift of the target group) you can easily hit the competitor massively.

I think this is what Microsoft is doing right now. At least it starts to realize the weaknesses of Google and looks at ways to address these specific shortcomings with products. Marketing 101.

For my taste, they are still too soft on Google, but the introduction of Bing marked a substantial change in the way Microsoft acts. And this is a good change IMO.

arizonadude




msg:4064785
 5:01 am on Jan 21, 2010 (gmt 0)

Once the Yahoo/Bing merger is finalized, I'd expect a rather quick rollout of "BingSense" or whatever name they give it.

Bing already has this in beta and I would bet once the merger is complete, you will see it come out of beta.

Google has really lost focus in trying to keep the investors happy.

Google has not been on top for the last 10 years. They were nothing but a hard drive in cased in legos 10 years ago.

Now that Microsoft is committed and there is real money involved, they may not take over search, but they are going to get a good chunk of it. It took them a while to realize you could make money with it which is why they were slow out of the gate.

Remember Netscape, once Microsoft took aim, they were toast.

copemedia




msg:4064821
 6:12 am on Jan 21, 2010 (gmt 0)

I agree that mcicrosoft partnering with apple to get the "hip" factor is a step in the right direction. The next step: replace firefox default search since G$ stepped on firefox, they now have no reason to still be mad at m$ about explorer. I thin you get those 2 things to happen and search volume decreases at g$ and goes to m$

This is great for advertisers obviously and great for adsense publishers. Why? You M$ hnowe has the advertisers they needed using the new M$ adsense replacement platform and you have choice again. Both advertisers and publishers need and should want this. It provides balance to both sides.

If we could make Bing the hip new thing, we could really get better terms for advertisers and publishers thuis year. I hope M$ does a deal with apple and firefox to push it's Bing results. Call me crazy, but it's time for a change.

Whitey




msg:4064822
 6:13 am on Jan 21, 2010 (gmt 0)

I wouldn't say scared . Strategically , let's say a finger in every pie and the ability to move across key market boundaries quickly.

Now that's kinda scary for the others !

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