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what happened to google?

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what happened to google? rick smalley 11/13/12 5:32 AM
has google started a decline?years ago they bumped altavista only to become exactly what the founders of google specifically stated they did not want to be.i remember larry page stating that an internet search should not be driven by advertising.Does anyone here know of alternative search engines that consumers will use.i myself have found the google results ineffective.Any input is appreciated as i have based my business model on google and it has failed me after 4 years.
#1 No support
#2 Ad driven search results
#3 google premièr partners are now soliciting me to repair my business listing,claiming they have contacts in google places
#4 i am forced to run an adwords campaign,frustrating after being reverified,and reinstated.
#5 im tired of jumping through hoops for google
#6 nothing but canned responses,bots etc..
hey google,i am a small business,i care about my customers. Do you?

Re: what happened to google? rick smalley 11/13/12 7:41 AM
here you go.  right from the founders of google.

Re: what happened to google? rick smalley 11/13/12 7:45 AM
read section 8 
Re: what happened to google? jim.jaggers 11/13/12 9:45 AM
In what way is Google allowing advertising to influence search results?
Re: what happened to google? rick smalley 11/13/12 9:51 AM
do a comparative search using  duckduckgo and let me know
Re: what happened to google? `Keenan 11/13/12 9:52 AM
Google generates revenue mainly by selling ads.  This pays for other free products like Google Places, Web Search, Analytics, Gmail, etc.

Places/Maps was created primarily for users.  Businesses are not "customers" for this product.  

If your marketing model is dependent up on the use of Google Places, you've put yourself in a very dependent position as you've experienced.

Re: what happened to google? JerryGG 11/13/12 9:53 AM
HI Jim

Google certainly is influenced by advertising, since they make more money from ads than print media combined: 

Does that directly influence the search results? Maybe, maybe not. Does that influence the amount of ad noise on the search results page? I'd say yes. (I am looking for an info-graphic to show this.)

Re: what happened to google? rick smalley 11/13/12 9:55 AM
interesting that a google premier partner is offering a solution via telephone support with google places.of course its $100.
Re: what happened to google? rick smalley 11/13/12 10:04 AM
did you read paragraph 8 appendix A?
Re: what happened to google? jim.jaggers 11/13/12 10:30 AM
For my particular search, I got one ad at the top on DuckDuckGo and two at the bottom on Google.  The actual search results were broadly similar.

I do acknowledge that the space around the search results is getting crowded with advertising.
Re: what happened to google? jim.jaggers 11/13/12 10:31 AM
I did.  That section said that Google would not allow advertising to affect the search results.  It said nothing about what they would do with the space around the search results.  They always intended to sell advertising there.
Re: what happened to google? rick smalley 11/13/12 10:34 AM

 "But we believe the issue of advertising causes enough mixed incentives that it is crucial to have a competitive search engine that is transparent and in the academic realm."

Re: what happened to google? JerryGG 11/13/12 10:35 AM
compare 2009:

to 2012:

2012 is clutter with ads.

Re: what happened to google? rick smalley 11/13/12 10:37 AM
i find all of this interesting because i remember altavista
Re: what happened to google? jim.jaggers 11/13/12 10:44 AM
I acknowledge the density of ads has increased, to the point of distraction and annoyance in my opinion.

But that is still the space around the search results, not the search results themselves.  Those do appear to be unaffected by advertising revenue.
Re: what happened to google? rick smalley 11/13/12 10:57 AM
speaking as a consumer(not a business owner)i am finding googles results to be longer is it relative to what you are looking for,example,if i want to get info on computer stores and services if i look at google i get a lot of dead ends,other search engines show more for me as a consumer.i wonder when googles marketshares will begin to reflect this.
Re: what happened to google? JerryGG 11/13/12 10:58 AM
In the end, it's too quick & easy to "close" or mess with a business and the recourse for the business owner is slow and painful.

Read about Mike Blumenthal's experiment in the NYT article and Google response.

On a side note, Rick is trying to diversify his listings and is trying to get in Tripadvisor (again), they say he's not eligible, but businesses 100% like his are. Like Google, there is no way to contact Tripadvisor to find out why and fix it.

Google, Tripadvisor, Yelp all make money off our business data and our reviews, but leave the business owners little recourse to fix things.
Re: what happened to google? rick smalley 11/13/12 11:30 AM
as a test i punched in    pet stores key west       im floored by the this the new normal?
Re: what happened to google? jim.jaggers 11/13/12 11:32 AM
I don't really know the area, but the results seem ok to me.
Re: what happened to google? rick smalley 11/13/12 11:41 AM
have you tried a search similar in your area?to me its frightening to see googles results compared to other search engines.i never paid attention before.since google came out ive used me it looks like google is making the same mistakes that altavista did way back.
Re: what happened to google? jim.jaggers 11/13/12 11:43 AM
I generally find the local search results on Google quite useful.  Though I appear to be unusual in that I do local searches on Google Maps, rather than on the General search screen.
Re: what happened to google? rick smalley 11/13/12 12:06 PM
google shares drop 9% and not even a month later i am forced to run adwords again,im sure there are many more ppl.
Re: what happened to google? JerryGG 11/13/12 12:15 PM
HI Jim/All

Here are the local results from Rick's "category", Business 
#1's website isn't pointing to a business and they may not qualify to have an address based on guidelines. 
#2 is good. rental company meeting guidelines 
#3 isn't at that location, but at many locations around town. (no business at 201 William Street meets google's guidelines since their landlord, City of Key West, does not allow booths, etc) 
#4 wrong category and if their boat is gone, they have no place for customers to walk up to. does not meet guidelines. 
#5 not a rental boat at all, but a group boat, wrong category. 
#6 business does not have walk up location, their boat's on a rack out of the water and gets put into water when needed. 
#7 they may have a booth that meets guidelines, but this again, is not a rental boat, but a charter.

SO, this shows me a number of problems. Businesses in wrong categories taking places away from businesses actually in that category. (Maybe let them show up, but lower.) The only "boat rental" business following googles guidelines is #2. (#5 is not rental, but is following guidelines. #7 is not rental, but maybe following guidelines.)

As you can see from these 7 listings Google's methodology and guidelines seem off.

Rick has ranked well of the years, lately in the top 3, even with boats outside his category until he got dropped.

In the end, Google needs to do a much better job at fixing their mistakes like dropping a business. If they can build a map with power outages, path, etc in an afternoon for Hurricane Sandy, why can't they fix his problem in 12 days now. (I hear it's worse for other people being gone months still.)

Really, an answer and timeline from Google saying: it's gone start over, wait a week, wait a month would help. He should have been at 100% capacity the last 12 days.

Thanks, Jerry

PS - diversifying his efforts is always good. but 90% of local search in Key West comes from Google, so he's kinda stuck in the Google eco-system.

  1. 617 Front Street
    Key West
    (305) 294-2628

    Boat Rentals of Key West
  2. 201 Williams Street
    Key West
    (305) 294-1500

    Sunset Watersports
  3. 201 William Street
    Key West
    (305) 304-4911

    Key West Sailing Adventure

    Score: 27 / 30 11 Google reviews
  4. 2 Duval Street
    Key West
    (305) 296-6293

    Glassbottom Boats
  5. 711 Eisenhower Drive
    Key West
    (305) 294-3095

    Easy Day Charters

  6. 1801 N Roosevelt Blvd, Historic Charter Boat Row-Key West City Marina
    Key West
    (305) 296-8494

    Gulfstream Party Boat Fishing

Re: what happened to google? jim.jaggers 11/13/12 12:39 PM
There are some business models for which Google's local search engine does not work well. I'm a bit of a Bed & Breakfast fan and, while I can find B&Bs in Google's local results, it seems to miss a lot of the best ones.  Rental accommodations in general are not handled well by Google's local search; though they are working on another search product for Hotels and you can sometimes see those in the search results.

Google also seems to have trouble with a business embedded in another business.  Charter fishing services at marina's are another business model for which I see repeated problems in the search results.

Keep in mind that Google's objective is to provide useful results for searchers.  They really aren't concerned about one business having a competitive advantage over another in the search results, so long as they don't catch anyone trying to game the system.

Google is revamping their entire local search space to make it more of a mobile, social search system. They will be years in the process.  At some point they will probably fix the technical issues that are keeping so many businesses out of the serps; but the fix is likely to be incidental to the overall development thrust exemplified by the migration to Google+ Local pages.

Re: what happened to google? rick smalley 11/13/12 12:49 PM
this is a good article,also some of the comments were interesting.
Re: what happened to google? SQLPerformance 11/14/12 2:51 AM
For container businesses the (Inside Safeway) option should be generally available.  It would be a real boon for campus based entities like hospitals and universities.

Why google ding home based businesses rather than just hiding the address for them and setting a default service area I do not know.

Is not 60% of an economy small businesses?

I am well known as not being a fan of googles ham-fisted dash to mobile phone waving socialites.
Re: what happened to google? rick smalley 11/14/12 5:58 AM
i want to visit a google office.according to their places guidelines if they are listed i should be able to walk up. 
Google Atlanta, 10th Street Northeast, Atlanta, GA
Re: what happened to google? rick smalley 11/14/12 6:08 AM
Re: what happened to google? rick smalley 11/14/12 6:11 AM
Re: what happened to google? Barrack Obama 3/19/13 1:47 PM
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