I'd conjecture that they may ultimately set up various filter levels
Well - I can see the point - to some extent - of doing it AT the "offensive" part - but once you type in an additional letter - it shouldn't be needed
Looks like they have loosened up on this - Google suggest would stop showing as soon as you hit the first two letters in a search for "69 Camaro" They don't anymore (and neither does Google instant). I was going to use that as my example. Can't really think of one off hand now with using the word "willows".
Seems like it is a relatively small number of phrases.
I think this will have a negative impact on 3 or 4 words or longer searches as users will get distracted with other results by the results being showed prior.
I've had this popping up for me today, it's really nice, no hit on performance for me. It just takes a little getting used to.
I can't see it yet and...
Edited by me: Never mind. Jury's still out.
[edited by: cien at 8:12 pm (utc) on Sep 8, 2010]
Nice move by Google for killing long tail searches.
Its blowing my mind. I think i just googled all over my desk.
My user experience:
It's been really buggy for me. Freezes, goes slow, etc. And just now when I rapidly typed in the search terms and impatiently pressed enter on the keyboard, as I used to do in Classic Google, basically trying to pretend all the activity below the search bar wasn't there, I got a completely blank page. No ads, no results. Repeated it and it didn't happen. Repeated it and it did.
So, buggy. But that's likely to be fixed over time.
Somewhere in the help text about this I seem to recall Google saying it was supposed to go as fast as people think. As someone pointed out on another thread here, it can't/doesn't even go as fast as some users type, probably because of that 3 second display lag. It ironically feels like a slower Google to me because of that. I don't like feeling things are racing to catch up to me. I suspect that's NOT likely to change.
On a physiological level, the jumpiness hurts my not-so-youthful eyes and gives me a headache.
I've never been quite so eager to fall back on Bing before.
On the other hand, the few reports I've seen of users have indicated they liked it. And business has been fine today. And I seem to recall the TV show The Simpsons stressed me out when I first watched it, because I wasn't used to the rapidfire pace. So did subways and big cities. So maybe I'll adjust.
The relevant question, of course, is what does this mean for SEO - my first obvious thought is that you now want to rank for the first couple of words of a long-tail search, even when those words by themselves don't make sense - if you sell blue fuzzy widgets, you want to rank for "blue fuzzy" even if nobody actually searches for that by itself. In most cases it seems to be suggesting longer terms, but I've seen a couple so far where it gives results for the first two words alone.
Another idea - suppose "blue fuzzy woozles" is much more popular than "blue fuzzy widgets" - then ranking for woozles might be a good idea if you sell widgets, because people looking for widgets will type "blue fuzzy w" and get the results for woozles, but see you ranking there with your widgets and click anyway (and never see your competition, who ranks first for "blue fuzzy widgets"). That's not good, it incentivizes spamming and trying to rank for things you're not relevant for, because suddenly you might actually get _targeted_ traffic from those non-targeted terms.
Re Lapizuli's Simpsons reference:
"I used to be with it, then they changed what it was. Now what I'm with, isn't it and what's it seems weird and scary. It'll happen to yoooouuu." - Grandpa Simpson
Just to chime in...looks like a huge slap in the head for long-tail SEO people. All the 1 to 3 word searches will show first. More established sites with keywords 1-2 words long should see a nice improvement. I'm already seeing a nice improvement for my old established sites that have rankings on short keywords.
I suppose if you look at it from the adwords point of view google also gets to show those much higher priced ads that concentrate on 1-3 keywords instead of showing the lower priced ads that concentrate on 3-5 keywords.
An insightful comment by Kevin Marks:
"I do wonder about Eric Schmidt's grand vision of Google predicting what we will want to do before we think of it ourselves. Will it in fact be what we wanted, or will it be a mishmash of expected behaviours, that we'll regret on our deathbeds?"
It will certainly intercept a lot of phrases and this will have an impact on webmasters who target longtail where a shortened version can show relevant sites. For example, if you target the phrase "cheap holiday package", someone starts typing it, gets to "cheap holiday..." and thats all they will probably need as all the sites targetting "cheap holiday" will show up.
Probably an advantage in many sectors for the bigger established brands though as they could be intercepting the smaller sites.
It will require a big rethink on longtail terms for many I reckon.
Totally agree on the scrolling thing. I would just keep retyping characters as my mouse focus will be in the search box and it will probably be easier to do that than scroll. But then again, there's only scraps of traffic below position 5 in many searches anyway IMO so I would expect the impact to be minimal.
As a user, I reckon this will rock though - looking forward to using it. As a webmaster, well just have to adapt I guess.
[edited by: Simsi at 9:55 pm (utc) on Sep 8, 2010]
Absolutely butt backwards idea. It kills longtail searches, essentially trying to encourage people to settle for less precise searches.
Of course currently the more precise the query, the worse Google does... so this is kind of a Google defense mechanism.
"We do fine on one word searches, and crappy on five word searches, so let's encourage the world to not do five word searches." Phhhht.
The video of the launch event is finally online...
Google Instant Launch Event
Just remembered that Yahoo had this way before Google, not the display part but the annoying 4000 options when you know what you're looking for.
IMO, Google is trying to speed up, when it will all confuse users by trying to look at the options.
I had to turn this feature off. It's totally annoying - and I pity the poor average surfer who has to suffer through this without knowing what this is or how to turn it off.
Moreover - in the event nobody noticed - "Instant" automatically changes the default number of search results displayed to 10. I always use 50 results displayed. So to be forced back to 10 - without notice - is annoying. And "Instant" doesn't work well when you display more than 10 results.
1. short tail search in mind = short estimated search duration:
- search box: you are presented a small number of different suggestions (which are on average longer than your search term)
- serps: you are presented few different serps (constructed by shorter terms)
2. long tail search in mind = long estimated search duration:
- search box: you are presented a great number of different suggestions (which are on average shorter than your search term)
- serps: you are presented various different serps (constructed by shorter terms)
on a long tail search there are more incentives to abort the search for a shorter term than there are incentives for a short tail search to abort the search for a longer term.
so i second the prediction, that it will hurt long tail searches.
Does this force retirement of the new auto-complete search box?
I anticipate rollout to non-logged in searchers by end of September.
[edited by: maximillianos at 10:18 pm (utc) on Sep 8, 2010]
Absolutely horrible interface! I think now fewer people will use Google and those who do use it, will use it less often. This is the worst change to a search engine I've ever seen in the last ten years.
The more Google trys, the worse it gets.
Bing could not of hoped for something better going into the Holiday season.
People will quickly become frustrated, annoyed and every thing in between and search else where.
What ever happend to clean simple search?
yikes, I call this google A.D.D.
The more Google trys, the worse it gets.
Actualy it's totally useless on a Netbook. All you see are the ads - not a single organic above the fold :-/
I do think that this AJAX serps release is just the first in a long line of improvements that will change the way SEO's focus their client's sites. Indeed how users come to find information.
Here's my crystal ball predictions ( no idea ... just a bunch of hunches ), say from now to say 5 years out from now.
- Trophy terms will be dead - no need for them
- Deeper , more unique content will strengthen to be king
- Social media buzz will become more and more powerful
- Ranking penalties will not be necessary in the majority of cases
- Spam content will be filtered out by default quicker and removed from the indexes
- IBL's from 3rd party sites will be of less importance
- Site architecture and internal linking signals will strengthem in importance.
I think that some site owners will respond with dynamic onsite lisitings of their own , so how this co exists will be interesting.
Google is really faced with some enormous challenges of it's own , and i just wonder if it is going to be caught in the vortex of technological change.
Right now i see social media and community dialogue as a major emerging trend. Google must surely be 2nd fiddle to this since it is not the source of those communities.
And some applications in highly used verticals will circumvent search. Google is a high level proposition and strategy tells us that to be the master of all you may become master of none. Gradually, i see a slice here and a slice there of specialist alternatives that reduce the overall dominance of Google , even though it may remain as the only player left in it's field.
However, i do see this as a remarkably transparent approach by Google which may be it's strategic nemesis. It is declaring very openly it's vision for the future , and to cement it , it will take a while , because consumer behaviour is established in the ways it currently works.
Other applications could take advantage of this by introducing facets of Google's vision into their technical offerings in that available time window - and that is significant leverage in itself. I do think this is a watershed step and all of us who work with SEO / PPC as a key component of their business' need to be extremely nimble. In my view this is the biggest signal for future disruption that we have seen in over 10 years.
.... just my thoughts
[edited by: Whitey at 11:16 pm (utc) on Sep 8, 2010]
How come no one has mentioned that you only see 1.5 organic results above the fold?
It's part of Google's vision. It takes care of the refinement , not the eye.
Re longtail... I don't believe that Google is any longer trying simply to use exact text strings to retrieve "best" matches. They haven't for a while now. Rather, at least for the most common longtail searches, I think they're using statistical analysis to match query patterns and historical data, which is not exactly the same as matching "concepts", but close enough that you might use a word beginning with "co".
Where this doesn't work right, it can get messy, but in my experience it still often works better than exact matches I've gotten from other engine(s)... There's no reason that a chance exact match for many searches should necessarily bring up a good page.
IMO, the new interface is about finding the quickest route to a useful result for most searchers on most searches. Those of us who know exactly what we want are less likely to be happy with the process.
Personalization is one of the tradeoffs that might well improve results, but it's one that still makes me extremely uneasy. This is the first day in a long time I've spent the whole day logged in, just to check out the interface.
My wife noticed this earlier this evening on UK. She instantly hated it - she can type and found it distracting.
A couple of hours previously a new customer told us his stats were moving more to bing and yahoo. Bet this fiasco moves them on quicker! :)
Last time I saw a deliberate business decision this big that turned negative was when Coca-Cola changed their recipe.
Maybe my remark needs to be spliced off. This discussion is about the detail of instant results.
My discussion is about how it fit's with the strategic direction of SEO and Google. I think both are significant and need to go separate ways.
The dilema is that the inputs co exist ... no wonder we have so many good threads emerging.
Personally I think it's distracting, but we'll all get used to it and wonder how we managed without it. I agree it will change long tail searches. It's that vision of the future whereby people watch TV, adverts and listen to music which has been selected for them, everything slowly homogenised. Originality in queries will reduce because of lazy clicking and the suggestions being 'close enough' ... Google themselves say people's eyes go to the results quickly, the closer they get to the query, the more arduous one more keystroke feels for the surfer.
BTW has anyone noticed that the bottom search box has gone? More 2nd page impressions perhaps?
Youtube is down. Tried to view the video and it shows this:
500 Internal Server Error
Sorry, something went wrong.
A team of highly trained monkeys has been dispatched to deal with this situation.
If you see them, show them this information:
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