Does the search industry need its own remodelling?

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As this is the last post of 2015, we thought it might be a good idea to examine the status and fundamentals of where the industry is at and where it could be heading.

When it comes to search engines many of us would agree that Google is the one and only king but could it possibly be argued that this is the problem?

There is no doubt that Google is such a big brand with access to a wide range of resources which allow for pioneering creations and developments. The trouble with this is the ‘eggs in one basket’ theory. It allows for a kind of monopoly to exist over the area, which stops (or at least heavily reduces) the chance of new competition. This can be problematic because however different the ideas from the same organisation are, there is still no substitute for complete freshness and originality.

For business you have to ask yourself what works better. Is it one company who is dominating or several ones with a variety of different strengths? It is clearly the latter, but the current structure of this industry doesn’t allow for this. Pause for thought?

When thinking about this it is worth remembering what Google actually is. First and foremost Google is an advertising organisation then secondly it is a search engine facility. With this and the apparent monopoly in mind, you can see how this causes an issue.

Search engines are what they are, although they have changed dramatically over the years. This has tended to be on the aspects which you don’t see ‘behind the machine’ such a speed, relevance etc. Clearly these are very useful and important to the user, but it still doesn’t alter the fact that nothing has radically and substantially changed about search engines since the early nineties. The layout of any search engine is broadly the same – the user has the same sort of relationship with each of the search engines and therefore the outcomes are always the same. Some would argue ‘what do you expect.’ Search engines are purposive programmes and if they do the job and deliver results why change? Others would argue that if every other industry changes (whether that be layout, branding, or user experience) then search engines should be no different.

The conclusion?

It seems down to a choice or whether things stay the same or develop.

If we take the two explanations above and put them together, there would seem to be a real fear of the search engine industry becoming stuck in a rut (or worse) left behind. If Google is the king of search engines, it cannot just sit back – it has an obligation to follow the times and aswell as giving the user what they want.  Maybe this could be Google’s New Year’s resolution?

From all of the In Front team, we wish you a Merry Christmas and Happy New Year for 2016!

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