Search Plus Your World the Expert Views – part 2

Search Plus Your World the Expert Views – part 2

12th January 2012

Yesterday we saw some experts shine their lights on “Search Plus Your World”. Opinions differ and today we see even more blogposts and opinions around the web. Like yesterday we gathered some more thoughts on the matter.

In the meanwhile, make sure you let us know how you feel about the quarrel between Google and Twitter. Who is right and who is wrong?

Expert Opinions

As said yesterday we asked some experts to give their opinions. Here are some more views:

Lisa Myers – Vervesearch

“Search Plus the World…or Search Plus Google +? Even the name is a bit too much “the world” really? More like everything in Google’s world. Ok so my comment started off a bit negative, I don’t think it’s all bad. The new release has some interesting feature, like the ability to see non personalised SERPs by just clicking the globe symbol. Ok so that might be the only good news. I believe SPW (see what I did there) is necessary for Google + to even have a chance at competing with the bigger social networks. I believe this could be the only way to get the mainstream onto Google+, whether it would work I’m not so sure about. The whole thing stinks of Google monopolisation, them promoting their own property and it could well backfire. One of the reasons that Google was so successful in the first place was its simplicity, are they overcomplicating it? Yes I do understand that Search Plus The World is in short integrating Google + as yet another Universal property and that it might improve the user experience with “useful” information in the search process, but just how clogged up is the SERPs going to be. You will in essence have to scroll to the second page to get anything that resembles a “normal” search results. Hey maybe they should create a “click to go to page 2” function ;)”

Sara Andersson – Search Integration

“Finally we see some of the actual reason for the Google+ launch. Google can learn about your circles and your use of the search engine at the same time and integrate the findings. The user gets a better depth and a more opinion-driven search result. Google can be more semantic and understand more of the people who have the biggest circles and that influences the others in each segment of a topic. Who is driving the recommendations and how can that influence the search results? It is still early days for a good and relevant personalised search engine but Google have once again proved that it is not to be forgotten about and G+ is not just another social media platform. G+ is a personal platform that will help your search and at the same time you help them improve Goggles understanding of the web.

Linked:in as a quite underdeveloped platform will now need to act and improve to stay on top. I believe the new “Google search plus the world” will impact the way we recommend people for a job and also how we find and recruit staff. Even the person behind each segment of a company’s business area will now have an even more important role to look and act “well” on the web as they are representatives for their companys’ segment. A persons private life will be mixed with the work-identity and truth and real objectives will influence the view of the company as well as the person representing it. It all blends in to one experience.

The only issue here really is the users experience of Google and what they think of Google as an engine and company now that they seem to be pushing their own results on G+ into the normal rankings above other social channels. Google is now living on the edge of beeing objective. Many people in the US have been put of by the fact that Google now crossed the line and displayed their own things above Facebook, Twitter and Linked:in. Twitter sent a direct message about it to Google and the audience (of course) but Google doesn’t seem to see their own misstake or act in this. Some people might now have a look at alternative engines and the strongest alternative with budgets seems to be Blekko.

Yandex recently invested $30 million in Blekko so they now have a potential of stepping up and grow if they can only stay on the objective side of the fence. Interresting days nevertheless! “

Kate Morris – Distilled

“I have not thought about this to a great extent from an SEO standpoint, but from a user perspective this makes sense. You can turn it on and off (personal vs non-personal), so I see no harm to end users. Does this piss off some businesses? Yes. Of course it does. Twitter doesn’t like it, but damn it Twitter, your search sucks, work on that yourself!

Google is changing things again and businesses are reliant on that traffic. That is not Google’s problem no more than it would the Yellow Pages problem if they had reordered the yellow pages years ago and stopped doing things alphabetically. Those Aardvark businesses would have been livid, but that was their choice.

It does not change the fact that it is Google’s property (the search engine) and they can do with it as they see fit. This does not hurt consumers, so I can’t see it as bad. As consumers ourselves we have the power to change things: Start using Bing. Find some VC money and hire away some of the talent that made Google awesome … do it better than Cuil.”

Gillian Muessig – SEOMoz

“Google Plus the World is the latest incremental step in the steady increase of personalization and socialization of search. Taking the backlash and complaints out of the equation, let’s take a broader look at why social components are so important to our web experience.

The web is first – and remains foremost – a condutor of connectivity. It connects us to our friends just as the telephone does. Remember when the image of a teenager was spending hours talking on the telephone, even when there was nothing to say? Humans are driven by their desire to connect, express, and simply hang onto the sense of being in the presence of others.

Search began as an aggregation and organization of data being generated by individual humans, shared with all humanity. As Search evolves, we can easily see that almost all data is only interesting to subsets of humanity. So we move to a scenario of Search being an aggregation and organization of data being generated by individuals and groups with subsets of humanity, to wit: other individuals and groups who are interested in it. To quote Peter Berger, ‘All very interesting… to those are interested in it.”

With that perspective, it seems to me that the future of our web experience will include an increasing amount of personal context around our search.

What impact does that have on search marketers? Consider the AIDA funnel (Awareness-Interest-Desire-Action) Social media feeds Awareness, Interest and Desire. When we most desire “pure search” will be in the Action or purchase-intent search. Then, we don’t much want to know our friends’ opinions anymore. We’re already swayed one way or the other. Now, we want the lowest product and shipping price, best return and exchange policy, superior support, etc. We’ll make a decision about the mix. We already know how our friends feel about the issue.

Will people turn off personalized search for purchase-intent oriented searches? Probably not. Most folks, even digital natives, can barely make their way around the web and comment on Facebook. We in the industry tend to forget that. Most folks will slip easily into the melding of social information and “traditional search” results without much effort. As Matt Cutts experiences, they will be delighted to see themselves and their friends pop up at the top of search results. And should the purchase intent searches be too full of acquaintances discussions, photos, and opinions, I think Google will address that issue in updates yet to be seen.

Keep your eye on the big picture. Search, social, and the web itself is still in its infancy. It just got here. And it’s going to be evolving rapidly for a long time to come.”


Again, a lot has been written, here are some highlights:

What the merging of Google+ and Google Search means to SEO – Raventools
How Google Search Plus Your World Will Impact SEO – SEOptimisie
Google And The Monopoly Paradox – TechCrunch
Google+ Strategy For Taking On Twitter & Facebook: Choke The Life Out Of Them – ReelSEO
Google “Search Plus” Impact on Local: Limited So Far – Searchengineland
A Guide to the War of Words Over Search Plus Your World – MarketingVox
Google+ is the new SEO – MediaUpdate
“Search Plus Your World:” Google Plus Now a Bigger Part of Search – Business Insider

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Written By
Bas van den Beld is an award winning Digital Marketing consultant, trainer and speaker. He is the founder of State of Digital and helps companies develop solid marketing strategies.
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