Google adds instant caffeine to the mix
Whoah! Google say this on their new Google Instant service:
“Feelings of euphoria and weightlessness are normal. Do not be alarmed”
And are they ever right. No TV campaign. No fanfare. Just another amazing enhancement to Search called Google Instant which, in a nutshell, shows instant search results (including PPC ads) as you type based on their finding that searchers read faster than they type.
Take a look here for full details.
What does this mean for impressions and CTR and therefore adwords costs?
What does this do to long tail search? This is what Matt Cutts says on his blog:
“The search results will remain the same for a query, but it’s possible that people will learn to search differently over time. For example, I was recently researching a congressperson. With Google Instant, it was more visible to me that this congressperson had proposed an energy plan, so I refined my search to learn more, and quickly found myself reading a post on the congressperson’s blog that had been on page 2 of the search results.”
They say “The most obvious change is that you get to the right content much faster than before because you don’t have to finish typing your full search term, or even press “search.””
So they’ve saved us all the hassle of clicking a button. Which apparently will save 2-5 seconds per search. As one commentator sagely put it on youtube:
“i didnt have to press enter?
HOLY SHIT HOW LAZY ARE WE GETTING?!??!”
Here’s the offending video (complete with patronising-geek-voice):
Also: “Another shift is that seeing results as you type helps you formulate a better search term by providing instant feedback. You can now adapt your search on the fly until the results match exactly what you want. In time, we may wonder how search ever worked in any other way.”
Does this mean that Instant will reduce the total number of keywords in a market because it will be making predictions based on what you type and therefore “train” the search market to use the keywords Google tells you are likely to get you better results, or more relevant results based on other peoples’ search behaviour?
It seems that this will reduce the long tail opportunity for internet marketers, although I do take on board Matt’s points and am less pessimisitic about this than some other blog posts I’ve read today.
The question to me really is: what criteria are they using for the order in which to put the predictive results? My colleague suggested this could be based on search volume, but what if the criteria is based on income potential to Google?
Especially as it seems that an impression will now be counted after 3 seconds. Surely this will reduce CTR (cost per click) which will increase CPC (costs per click) across the board?
What do you think?
Ultimately, this is another major feat of engineering and if you can avoid being cynical about Google allows search to be even easier and more accessible to tempt all those internet dwellers that have never ventured outside the looming walls of Facebook to take a peek.
As far as internet marketing is concerned, I believe it’s business as usual – just stick to producing quality valuable content and you’ll be just fine 🙂
P.S. Google instant also gives me a good excuse to get Bob Dylan on the blog…