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What is Google Suggest?
As you type into the search box, Google Suggest guesses what you're typing and offers suggestions in real time. This is similar to Google's "Did you mean?" feature that offers alternative spellings for your query after you search, except that it works in real time. For example, if you type "bass," Google Suggest might offer a list of refinements that include "bass fishing" or "bass guitar." Similarly, if you type in only part of a word, like "progr," Google Suggest might offer you refinements like "programming," "programming languages," "progesterone," or "progressive." You can choose one by scrolling up or down the list with the arrow keys or mouse.
pretty special that, might result in more people looking into specific areas that they normally wouldn't search for.
Looks like this feature could also work to funnel a searcher who was prepared to type in a very niche search towards the more common ones it offers to autocomplete. Then of course more competitive (and expensive) general phrase AdWords ads would get displayed instead of the cheaper niche phrases.
Hmmmmm, could Google make more money if that happened? ;)
That was my first thought as well. Heard a nice term today "sheeple" - this would herd searchers into well trodden (and therefore well paying) sections of the searchsphere. Will they be happier with the real listings?
Don't see this becoming the default search for googles page just yet - but maybe it will raise it's head as an option when customising search behaviour.
I got to thinking that this could be very good for SEO. If searches start to become more focused on fewer terms those terms will become much more competitive. More sites will need the help of professionals.
The "did you mean" feature offers suggestions after you submit your query, thus allowing you to finish your thought. In addition, it is used most often to address spelling issues, rather than completely different search strings. Here G has the opportunity to shape the query and “herd” the user down G's preferred path.
While the new tool is a logical and modest step in terms of extending the G technology, IMHO it's a significant step for G to be inserting themselves at this early stage with the potential to influence their customers' behavior.
My initial thoughts are this is good if it is a win for the user and they are driven to a query that has more relevant results than what they may have initially entered. An example being if someone was initially typing an awkward phrase that would yield poor results given their intention, this tool could be very helpful and powerful for G.
This may not be as good if the suggestions are driven by the money terms.
I suppose time, and this forum, will tell.
In any case, it is worth noting.