homepage Welcome to WebmasterWorld Guest from 54.196.225.45
register, free tools, login, search, pro membership, help, library, announcements, recent posts, open posts,
Become a Pro Member
Visit PubCon.com
Home / Forums Index / Google / Google SEO News and Discussion
Forum Library, Charter, Moderators: Robert Charlton & aakk9999 & brotherhood of lan & goodroi

Google SEO News and Discussion Forum

This 47 message thread spans 2 pages: 47 ( [1] 2 > >     
Is Google losing dominance to internal search?
diberry




msg:4571602
 4:30 pm on May 7, 2013 (gmt 0)

In the past year, I've observed a sea change in how average people I know find new sites online, and I'm wondering if others are seeing this.

(1) They default to Yelp for local info on places to go, whether a restaurant is good, etc.

(2) Instead of "Just Google it", I'm told "Just search on Pinterest" for certain types of queries. "Bloglovin" is another one - great way to find those little quality blogs that aren't showing up in Google the way they used to.

(3) Want news? Don't check search - go to your preferred news site that slants the way you like it. ;)

(4) Need a plumber? Ask friends on Facebook, or check Yelp. You have no idea if the top guy in Google actually knows his trade.

(5) Since "Google just gives a few top companies", people are going straight to their preferred top companies and doing internal searches. (Amazon, Bestbuy, Yelp, etc.)

(6) Some people have switched to Bing because "it's easier to find what I want in Bing". (If Bing doesn't deliver, they'll check Google next.)

I've mentioned this in other threads, and some of you have mentioned seeing similar things. I do not think this is already happening on a big huge scale and the days of Google dominance are over, I just think we may be at the start of a new trend. Namely, people realizing search engines are not the only way, nor in some cases are they the best way, to explore the web.

If so, then Google will eventually lose their position as gatekeeper to the vast majority of the web - not to another search engine, but to internal search on preferred sites.

I'm also thinking this might explain why some of us have observed we're still #1 in Google, but not getting the same traffic it used to bring.

Are you seeing/hearing similar things? Do your stats suggest Google traffic isn't as voluminous as it used to be? Are you seeing more traffic from other sources, or just a general decrease that doesn't correspond with rankings changes?

 

CainIV




msg:4571730
 3:40 am on May 8, 2013 (gmt 0)

I think that most of what you are experiencing could be corroborated by most marketers and business owners online.

The only real questions you should try and answer are - what is the direction consumers are going in search, and how can you capitalize on it.

Lexur




msg:4571741
 5:39 am on May 8, 2013 (gmt 0)

Still most people have Google as start page. That's the power of Google. Tons of people still write yelp in the Google search box to go yelp.com and find the plumber.
One day, a group of companies will realize that and will try to put in people's eyes another different start page enough clean and useful to let Google in the past.
It happened to General Motors, IBM, Microsoft and next will be Google. Not sure about when, but it will happen.

topr8




msg:4571748
 6:27 am on May 8, 2013 (gmt 0)

>>Still most people have Google as start page.

i agree... but i also think that a lot of people think Google is the internet, facebook has gone a little way to changing this - now they think facebook is the internet!

>>Tons of people still write yelp in the Google search box

again agree, but i think it partly because a LOT of people don't really understand what the address bar is. OT ... this is why the whole smartphone app business is so big, most people don't really understand how things work at all, so being able to press just one button is what they like.

driller41




msg:4571776
 8:49 am on May 8, 2013 (gmt 0)

Unfortunately their year on year earnings growth show they are still king of the hill.

Leosghost




msg:4571790
 10:30 am on May 8, 2013 (gmt 0)

most people don't really understand how things work at all, so being able to press just one button is what they like.

Not OT at all..Because most people don't understand most things at all ..simple = success..

Martin Ice Web




msg:4571799
 10:33 am on May 8, 2013 (gmt 0)

@diberry,

nice post.

I would like to add that the Young internet generation grows up with Facebook. Goole as a synonym for internet is the old generation, new internet synonym is Facebook. Look at brands that have their site hosted on Facebook!

Unfortunately Amazon did it right for ecommerce as number one spot, although they are far away to be the best. But they handled it with massive ads to get it into users brain.
Google now sits between this two. Google+? No way. And instead showing poeple alternatives to the realy big ones, they put them in a long row from page #1 to #10. For sure poeple will go direct to the big ones without Google. It is a learning process and Google has launched it!

martinibuster




msg:4571804
 10:46 am on May 8, 2013 (gmt 0)

What does your analytics say about traffic trends? My analytics shows that Google is overwhelmingly the top traffic driver. No other site comes close.

What does your analytics say about it?

Lexur




msg:4571822
 12:12 pm on May 8, 2013 (gmt 0)

martinibuster, this thread is about the growth of the internal search.
If that's being achieved or not, we will not receive any traffic nor will have a clue in our stats. Only Yelp will know if people is looking for plumbers more or less into its directory.

edit: unless you're a plumber :-)

taberstruths




msg:4571839
 12:48 pm on May 8, 2013 (gmt 0)

>>Still most people have Google as start page.


I am not sure about other people, but I have both chrome and firefox set up to show my most visited pages. I think more and more people are doing this than just having google as the default page.

steve40




msg:4571854
 1:42 pm on May 8, 2013 (gmt 0)

I think Martinbuster is right if you look at the pure stats but are internal searches using Google search box on the site referring the visitor from Google or from the site, I have noticed a larger number coming to my home page and an increase in site searches over the last year or so ( I use Google search on site ) from a Google perspective they have a larger % share of adsense on search than display so they have the bases covered.

I have also noticed a large increase in the number of users who use the sites name as search query in Google.

User behavior is changing and branding of your site will gain even more importance over the coming years which will make entering any niche harder and harder .

I also think Google's results are some of the worst I have seen in 5 years but as others have said before me AI takes times to learn and evolve and G's search results are currently struggling with the speed that the grey area SEO's can adapt compared with how long it takes the AI algo to adjust

Just my 2 cents worth

diberry




msg:4571883
 3:38 pm on May 8, 2013 (gmt 0)

what is the direction consumers are going in search, and how can you capitalize on it.


That'll be a slightly different answer for every webmaster here. For me, it's social media all the way.

What does your analytics say about traffic trends? My analytics shows that Google is overwhelmingly the top traffic driver. No other site comes close.


Google provides only 30-50% of my traffic, even on sites where I rank #1 on lots of great terms. What, you think everyone here is an SEO? ;) I build for visitors and do very well in social media. Google hasn't been able to hold a candle to the traffic SM brings me in years, and it's getting worse.

Again, I'm not suggesting this is an established happening in every niche already. But it may be the tip of the iceberg. My sites may happen to be in niches where this behavior is more prominent. The question is: are these niches unique, or will this behavior spread? Are people going to learn that they don't need to include Google on their path to other sites?

While I'm sure a lot of people today will go to their graves typing "Yelp" into that same search bar as they always have, I think:

--Martin Ice Web is right: young people especially want something new and fresh that's theirs, and search just can't be that. Neither will Facebook in a few years!

--Apps are showing people they can have a one-click relationship with websites. More and more casual browsers aren't even using browsers that much anymore (and I believe this trend will continue, especially if HTML5 ever gets itself going).

--Search isn't interactive or pretty... it's academic. Pulling from a database seemed cutting edge a few years ago, but search looks like DOS and the niche sites with interal search look like GUI. And it's not just young people - my Baby Boomer friends have figured out on their own that Amazon's sections which show you what other people bought instead of or in addition to the product you're viewing offer additional browsing value that search cannot.

And I think Google is concerned about these trends too, or they wouldn't be pushing Google+ so hard, even when it seems to be a total failure. And Knowledge Graph? What is that, but an attempt to update Google's status as a portal?

Search will ALWAYS be the best way to find some info, BTW. I don't see it going away completely, ever.

StoutFiles




msg:4571885
 3:41 pm on May 8, 2013 (gmt 0)

Is Google losing dominance to internal search?


Yes, but the amount of people using a computer daily is increasing, so Google's numbers continue to increase.

They know the future of search won't always revolve around them; that's why they've been branching into many other avenues of money making.

martinibuster




msg:4571929
 5:13 pm on May 8, 2013 (gmt 0)

but the amount of people using a computer daily is increasing


No, it's going the opposition direction. That's why members are talking about HTML5 adoption and direct interaction via APPs. Not to belabor the point, but check your analytics to see what devices people are using to view your site. The general trend is that around 20-25% of traffic is now mobile, higher for certain niches.

PC manufacturing is down between 15-18% [247wallst.com]

Forbes discusses [forbes.com] how the world is migrating away from PC toward mobile.

Hardware maker NVIDIA has lower sales [trefis.com] because of migration away from PC.

Local Search via Non-PC devices [searchenginewatch.com] quadrupled in 2012.

HuskyPup




msg:4571944
 5:45 pm on May 8, 2013 (gmt 0)

but the amount of people using a computer daily is increasing



No, it's going the opposition direction.


Just because PC sales and equipment are down does not necessarily mean fewer users, it just means lower sales of those products.

I for one do not even need to upgrade my 4 year old system, it does everything I ask of it and more and I have a 2 year old system as a back-up ready to go if it were to fail.

There have to be more users but using smaller "computers" like smart phones and tablets, tablets shipped are WAYYYY up according to the BBC with shipments of almost 150 million units in the first quarter alone:

[bbc.co.uk...]

BaseballGuy




msg:4571946
 5:48 pm on May 8, 2013 (gmt 0)

I wonder if the next Penguin update (that allegedly is going to drop sometime in May, according to search engine roundtable) will be the final nail in the coffin for Google?

Over the past 2 years I have heard "non tecchie" friends and family state that they cannot find what they're looking for in Google and have resorted to Bing.

Talk about cutting off one's nose to spite the face.

martinibuster




msg:4571967
 6:20 pm on May 8, 2013 (gmt 0)

There have to be more users but using smaller "computers" like smart phones and tablets


We're in agreement. People are walking away from PCs and relying on smart phones and tablets. What I said. ;)

1script




msg:4572051
 9:28 pm on May 8, 2013 (gmt 0)

Just because PC sales and equipment are down does not necessarily mean fewer users, it just means lower sales of those products.
These are *sales* stats. I imagine accurate *use* stats are harder to come by. My house is overflowing with old PCs. Even though I cannot use smartphone for anything worthwhile (finger dexterity is not what it used to be) and will continue to use full-size keywboards, I will probably not buy a new PC anytime soon. The sales trend does not meant that there are fewer PCs available to people, it just says that fewer of those are new.
Google provides only 30-50% of my traffic, even on sites where I rank #1 on lots of great terms.
Yup, same here except in my case it's 20%-30%
rish3




msg:4572060
 10:16 pm on May 8, 2013 (gmt 0)

The Yelp example seemed interesting to me, so pulled some Comscore numbers from the "Top 50 Properties" reports they release. The data is fairly simple...Comscore provides the "total # of unique visitors" across all properties, then the "# of unique visitors" for each one individually.

Since the total varies month to month, I converted the numbers into "percentage of ALL visitors, to all sites...that visited this property".

Just three data points (Dec 2012, Feb 2013, and and Mar 2013), so this isn't definitive, but it's certainly interesting. Yelp is gaining "share" at a pretty good clip, while G, Y, etc, are roughly flat.

The plotted chart (jpg) [i.imgur.com]

The data (jpg) [i.imgur.com]

piatkow




msg:4572654
 10:49 am on May 10, 2013 (gmt 0)

Not new, just more non specialists using the technology so its becoming more obvious.

For a long time I have seen people post questions in forums that could have been answered by a search engine in less time than it took to make the post. (Simple queries, not recommendations).

rankmaster77




msg:4572702
 1:43 pm on May 10, 2013 (gmt 0)

Google can only rank 8-10 sites on the first page for a particular KW, meaning the rest are left out to dry as we all know, even though there are some good websites on page 2 for certain keywords.

So is it surprising people are looking for other alternatives to search?

Google is the king of search (for now), no question, but as our familiarity with a search tool increases, people who grew up on Google will want something more robust sooner or later. I consider this the evolution of search.

If they don't find a way (other than panda and penguin) to serve up more than just the same old sites for certain keywords on "one page", Google will begin to start looking more like a one dimensional search platform. And even though I hate to admit it because I am not a fan of FB, I think they have the right idea with Social Graph and the future of search, the question is will FB put the necessary resources behind their internal search engine to make it really break away from traditional search & offer a more serious alternative.

rankmaster77




msg:4572707
 1:57 pm on May 10, 2013 (gmt 0)

piatkow, we are all social beings by nature, even if its socializing through a forum in our underwear in a dark room..LOL

And without taking away anything from Google, because they are a power house...A SE like G is only serving up one form of search experience and in a very "unsocial fashion"..and as we evolve and search evolves G will begin to start looking more like Altavista from a perception standpoint..its inevitable unless they figure it out...

explorador




msg:4572721
 3:02 pm on May 10, 2013 (gmt 0)

>>Tons of people still write yelp in the Google search box

again agree, but i think it partly because a LOT of people don't really understand what the address bar is. OT ... this is why the whole smartphone app business is so big, most people don't really understand how things work at all, so being able to press just one button is what they like.

Exactly.

At work A LOT of people enter the name of the website, difficult to believe "youtube" and then click on the link provided by google. Even that they use Google a lot they perform pretty awful searches and first, often ask coworkers about info. It's pretty embarrassing.

incrediBILL




msg:4572808
 6:50 pm on May 10, 2013 (gmt 0)

I don't think it's going to threaten their dominance but good curated content will always be sought after over random search results. I've always had places that I go where people with similar interests are posting information I find useful and refer to them over a search engine.

Don't forget Craigslist as there's lots of stuff you can find there that you cannot find in Google whatsoever which baffles me that many handymen, etc. have a website yet I have to go to Craigslist to find them because all Google offers up is Angieslist which won't let you see anything unless you register which isn't going to happen.

bwnbwn




msg:4572850
 8:02 pm on May 10, 2013 (gmt 0)

I have a question since I see this here quite a bit. Who in here has downloaded comscore tracking? They only track 40% of the net so the other 60% is a guess. Yelp is another one I can do without BTW there are 1000's of yelp review posters for hire.

I feel internet/users have moved away or will move away from these sites due to all the fraud being committed within them. Anggielist is just another one that has been bought up by large corporations and went from a good site to one I have no use for.

BTW comscore tracking might want to see what is really does with your security settings.

StoutFiles




msg:4572854
 8:12 pm on May 10, 2013 (gmt 0)

No, it's going the opposition direction. That's why members are talking about HTML5 adoption and direct interaction via APPs. Not to belabor the point, but check your analytics to see what devices people are using to view your site. The general trend is that around 20-25% of traffic is now mobile, higher for certain niches.


Phones ARE computers. I didn't say "desktop computers". Anything that can use Google is included. Usage is UP.

incrediBILL




msg:4572877
 9:04 pm on May 10, 2013 (gmt 0)

Android is helping keep people using Google more than ever because it's the default for everything and Android pings the cloud frequently for search results.

mcskoufis




msg:4572899
 10:41 pm on May 10, 2013 (gmt 0)

Who in here has downloaded comscore tracking? They only track 40% of the net so the other 60% is a guess.


This is an interesting one @bwnbwn. Are there any other independent sources of such statistics which are more accurate? HitWise in UK was using ISP data for instance, but costs a fortune to have access to.

The OP and everyone else can claim that internal search is winning based on their website analytics data which can't be taken into consideration for such an argument IMHO.

I think Google in particular (less of late but still the undoubted king of search) and search engines in general have proven to be very valuable to humans. I find it hard to believe that mobile or tablet users won't use search.

And fully agree with you @incrediBILL...

Android is helping keep people using Google more than ever because it's the default for everything and Android pings the cloud frequently for search results.

diberry




msg:4572934
 1:13 am on May 11, 2013 (gmt 0)

The OP and everyone else can claim that internal search is winning based on their website analytics data which can't be taken into consideration for such an argument IMHO.


I started this thread to collect anecdotal information and see if there was anything worth testing. I never expected anyone to take my interpretation of my stats (or things my friends have said) as proper evidence or a proper argument. If some of us decide there IS something worth testing and we can figure out a way to do it, I'm all for that!

Leosghost




msg:4572935
 1:20 am on May 11, 2013 (gmt 0)

I think Google in particular (less of late but still the undoubted king of search) and search engines in general have proven to be very valuable to humans. I find it hard to believe that mobile or tablet users won't use search.

It is not a question of "black" or "white"..it is not that mobile device users
won't use search..

It is that they do/will use it less..hence Google's panic over trying to get everyone into G+..

They are now no longer the de facto gateway to the web..they are now one of a hand full of such gateways..

And the lack of their access to facebook..blindsided them..in more ways than one..

This 47 message thread spans 2 pages: 47 ( [1] 2 > >
Global Options:
 top home search open messages active posts  
 

Home / Forums Index / Google / Google SEO News and Discussion
rss feed

All trademarks and copyrights held by respective owners. Member comments are owned by the poster.
Home ¦ Free Tools ¦ Terms of Service ¦ Privacy Policy ¦ Report Problem ¦ About ¦ Library ¦ Newsletter
WebmasterWorld is a Developer Shed Community owned by Jim Boykin.
© Webmaster World 1996-2014 all rights reserved