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Google Universal Search - news in the middle of the SERPS and more

   
3:20 pm on May 16, 2007 (gmt 0)

10+ Year Member



Well it looks like Google is unleashing News in the middle of their search results. When searching for Brown widgets do I really need to see news results? If I wanted to see news on this subject matter I would go to the news section of the major engines or go directly to news sites.

What are your thoughts on this. Do you find the news to even be relevant of the subject matter?

9:19 pm on May 16, 2007 (gmt 0)

5+ Year Member



Found this link that gives a bit more info about the subject.
[reuters.com...]

Could make a lot of seo's unhappy if there links are dropped due to the other Google entities.

9:52 pm on May 16, 2007 (gmt 0)

WebmasterWorld Senior Member 10+ Year Member



As a user, when I want raw search I want raw search. Top or bottom of the page didn't annoy, but this is silly to me.

It seems to say the first 3 or so results are better, but then you need to read some news. Where can I turn it off? ;)

From an SEO perspective, the top 3 or 4 are golden; below the news spot, spot 5 ain't what it used to be when your're competing with an image above you.

9:58 pm on May 16, 2007 (gmt 0)

5+ Year Member



I agree, the break in the middle is very distracting as a search user. I like the idea of news in the SERPS, but find it some place of its own so I know where to look for it.
10:16 pm on May 16, 2007 (gmt 0)

WebmasterWorld Senior Member jimbeetle is a WebmasterWorld Top Contributor of All Time 10+ Year Member



They're calling it Universal Search. It was announced on Google's searchology webcast today. Though today was the official launch, it started rolling out a couple of weeks ago and should be completed in a week or two.

From now on when a search is done the SERPs can include results from any of the verticals - web, images, video, news, maps, base, etc. And these won't be in the old OneBox location (except images), they'll be 'ranked' in the SERPs as G sees fit.

At the same time G is rolling out a new 'universal' nav bar across all search verticals and services.

Interesting times ;-).

10:20 pm on May 16, 2007 (gmt 0)

WebmasterWorld Senior Member 10+ Year Member



>>they'll be 'ranked' in the SERPs as G sees fit

A bit of SEO thrown at Wiki, CNN, etc?

11:04 pm on May 16, 2007 (gmt 0)

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Perhaps soon there will be nothing but Wikipedia and Google results on the first page.
9:23 pm on May 16, 2007 (gmt 0)

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<moved from another location>

looks like the search engine space is changing once again...

[tgdaily.com...]

[edited by: tedster at 4:26 am (utc) on May 17, 2007]

9:25 pm on May 16, 2007 (gmt 0)

5+ Year Member



<moved from another location>

Google's announcment

[reuters.com...]

They are just capturing more and more traffic. This will hurt many seo efforts now that we are going to be competing with Google's other entities

[edited by: tedster at 4:28 am (utc) on May 17, 2007]

9:55 pm on May 16, 2007 (gmt 0)

WebmasterWorld Senior Member 10+ Year Member



<moved from another location>

Check it out:

[pcworld.com...]

[edited by: tedster at 4:30 am (utc) on May 17, 2007]

11:39 pm on May 16, 2007 (gmt 0)

WebmasterWorld Administrator robert_charlton is a WebmasterWorld Top Contributor of All Time 10+ Year Member Top Contributors Of The Month



Google will make a significant push toward integrating results from a variety of its search engines in an attempt to deliver as relevant and comprehensive a result set as possible to search queries.

Recent thread that relates...

Google news results showing in normal SERPS
Never seen this before!
[webmasterworld.com...]

[edited by: tedster at 4:30 am (utc) on May 17, 2007]

9:29 am on May 17, 2007 (gmt 0)

WebmasterWorld Senior Member 10+ Year Member



I'm underwhelmed, if they wanted us to use their other search functions they could have had them accessible from a "universal" search box rather than as stand-alone products.
10:50 am on May 17, 2007 (gmt 0)

WebmasterWorld Senior Member steveb is a WebmasterWorld Top Contributor of All Time 10+ Year Member



"will take effect on Wednesday and be improved over time"

The boy who cried wolf.

Someday Google might make a change that improves its core search product...

... or not.

11:13 am on May 17, 2007 (gmt 0)

WebmasterWorld Senior Member essex_boy is a WebmasterWorld Top Contributor of All Time 10+ Year Member



Dont be silly SteveB they are a public company now

[edited by: Essex_boy at 11:13 am (utc) on May 17, 2007]

11:34 am on May 17, 2007 (gmt 0)

WebmasterWorld Senior Member pageoneresults is a WebmasterWorld Top Contributor of All Time 10+ Year Member



They're calling it Universal Search.

And they are one step closer to dominating the Internet. Like they don't already. ;)

Smart move if you ask me. How else to prepare for the eventual move to micro levels of search? Google is doing it right. And, they pretty much have been from day one.

I don't want to see any more Google Demise topics. ;)

Each time Google's stock rises, I get this sharp pain in my side. It reminds me how blind I was when I balked at $85.00 per share.

11:35 am on May 17, 2007 (gmt 0)

WebmasterWorld Senior Member 10+ Year Member



simply exposing more of their revenue channels across the board...you had to see this coming...!
1:24 pm on May 17, 2007 (gmt 0)



Someday Google might make a change that improves its core search product...

They don't need to...soon they'll be providing their own top ten keyword matching G results/solutions/services instead.

What will they do next, stop crawling the web?

Think about it... they already own (or scrap) enough content to fill out most queries...so why continue giving free exposure to their competitors, us publishers.

[edited by: Web_speed at 1:34 pm (utc) on May 17, 2007]

1:56 pm on May 17, 2007 (gmt 0)

10+ Year Member



A couple of things ...

1) I guess this means Google is monetizing Google News, right? When they pop those news results on the search page the ads are still there. I wonder if this means they will cut the news providers in on the revenue.

2) You think SEO is aggressive right now? Just wait until we start seeing spam invade google books and google video. lol I can see a few people writing books on how to buy a blue widget.

2:01 pm on May 17, 2007 (gmt 0)

WebmasterWorld Senior Member netmeg is a WebmasterWorld Top Contributor of All Time 10+ Year Member Top Contributors Of The Month



And still they bury the Froogle/Base/Products search to the point where only very few people who know it exists can find it...

I don't particularly like what I've seen so far. Since Google is so hot on personalization these days, why not give me the option in my preferences to check boxes for what I want to have appear in my searches - video, local, news, books, products - or just plain raw search. Now THAT would make sense.

2:07 pm on May 17, 2007 (gmt 0)

WebmasterWorld Senior Member 10+ Year Member



The advice given on this board for some time now has been to stop depending on Google as the primary source of traffic/income. If you are in that position you are very likely more vulnerable now than you were prior to Universal Search -- and that vulnerability increases with each new press release. Diversify or die.

.............................

2:14 pm on May 17, 2007 (gmt 0)

5+ Year Member



And once wiki develops the 'sum of all human knowledge' (couple weeks), G will buy them too.
2:16 pm on May 17, 2007 (gmt 0)



How charming, eh?

It's business, strictly business. This is done on obviously commercial topics. Let's do simple math:

Before: 10 free results, 11 paid results (on topics where there were advertisers)
If user click on a SERP link: 47.6% chance that user clicks on free result, 52.4% on commercial

After: 8 free results, 2 useless/noncommercial/Google-property results (Wikipedia, Google News or google Books), 11 paid results.
If user click on a SERP link: 38% chance that user clicks on free result, more than 53% chance on commercial - because there are 2 extra useless links.

There will be more competition for Top-8 now that there's only 8 spots left, and 2 companies that fell out would have to resort to AdWords. Genious. I think Google will get a 10% revenue jump with this approach.

Google = "Toll Booth for the internet"

if you are one of the top-8 results, you just officially lost 10% of your traffic

2:28 pm on May 17, 2007 (gmt 0)



I can see how integrating results from the main Web index, images, news, etc. might be useful for a lot of people. For the person who wants pictures of "Britney Spears nude" and doesn't know about Google Images, or who wants the latest on the new president of [country] and doesn't know about Google News, "Google Universal Search" is likely to be handy.

I'd like "Google Universal Search" better if there were a way for experienced users to opt out, though. If I'm looking up Napoleon Bonaparte, I'm probably not interested in seeing New York Times news-archive results (at $4.95 a pop) at the bottom of the page.

BTW, I think it's a mistake--and a bit paranoid--to assume that Google Universal Search is a plot against SEOs by greedy corporate beancounters. Just because you don't like something and don't benefit from it doesn't mean it's evil or a bad idea.

[edited by: europeforvisitors at 2:35 pm (utc) on May 17, 2007]

2:31 pm on May 17, 2007 (gmt 0)



[offtopic]europeforvisitors, I am sorry but did your site just fell off the first page or something? Welcome to "the other side", I am glad you are finally with us! (let me rephrase, if something happened - I am sorry.. but it is very unusual that you finally have an opinion other than Google=God)[/offtopic]

[edited by: aleksl at 2:35 pm (utc) on May 17, 2007]

2:33 pm on May 17, 2007 (gmt 0)

WebmasterWorld Senior Member wheel is a WebmasterWorld Top Contributor of All Time 10+ Year Member



As a searcher, I really dislike this. If there's a lot of other folks who also dislike it, I wonder what the response will be? Suck it up? Move to a metasearch engine? Something else?

As an SEO'er however, up until this point there was only one way to the front page - rank in the top 10. Now there are multiple doorways onto the front page. This is good.

Kind of funny really, I see this as exactly the opposite of what Google likely intended (good for users, bad for optimizers).

2:39 pm on May 17, 2007 (gmt 0)



As a searcher, I really dislike this. If there's a lot of other folks who also dislike it, I wonder what the response will be? Suck it up? Move to a metasearch engine? Something else?

Given the fact that Google has always been very careful to keep its interface simple, I'd guess that this change wasn't made without a lot of testing. And if there is a backlash, or if Google finds that users aren't taking advantage of the new "Universal Search" features, the search page will probably just "de-evolve" to what it was before.

3:02 pm on May 17, 2007 (gmt 0)

5+ Year Member



Wheel is right. For searchers, the quality results they are searching for just diminished.

I say we start a campaign to have everyone change their G preferences to 20 results, not the default 10. At least it will make you feel better that you are on page one, just not in the top ten results. Even changing your preferences still calls back 11 Adwords listings.

For SEO's, the paths to page one just increased. I've had a lot of fun optimizing to be included in the top 10, but also using Base/Froogle for an ADDITIONAL free ranking, and using LOCAL for another free listing. Now to focus on news, wiki, etc. (as if I haven't started already) ;)
justablink

3:47 pm on May 17, 2007 (gmt 0)

WebmasterWorld Senior Member 10+ Year Member



i think Adwords specialists are happy. more Google Search Network sites in the searcher's reach now. And these are way better than Content Network clicks (at least for me).
3:55 pm on May 17, 2007 (gmt 0)

WebmasterWorld Senior Member netmeg is a WebmasterWorld Top Contributor of All Time 10+ Year Member Top Contributors Of The Month



I dunno, I just did a random check for a couple dozen very key search terms for various clients plus a few for my own personal sites, and so far I have yet to see any change in rankings, or any news items (or other Google stuff) dropped in the middle of the results. I'd think that at least one or two of the search terms would have had related news stories, but so far, nothing. Maybe they're not done yet, or maybe it won't be as bad as people are afraid it will be.
4:19 pm on May 17, 2007 (gmt 0)

WebmasterWorld Senior Member 10+ Year Member



>>random check for a couple dozen very key search terms for various clients plus a few for my own personal sites, and so far I have yet to see any change in rankings, or any news items

I'm not seeing it today at all, any browser, cookie/no cookie, logged in/not.

Only on news terms yesterday. The implication to me seemed to be we would start seeing images, vids, etc. on non-news terms down-the-road.

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