Real Time Search – A Game Changer

Microsoft’s Bing and Google just reached separate deals with Twitter for rights to index the Twitter data as it occurs… in real-time.

This is a game changer on a couple of levels.

1. People are going to tweet just to get into Google’s search engine results pages (SERP’s). It’s a game changer for companies that are looking to get into the Google and Bing search results pages. I don’t see the results in Bing yet, though some have said they are showing up for them. Google has yet to integrate Tweets into their results – but it will be interesting to see how they go about it.

Tweeting might have just become important to me again, depending on what the results show, and whether they are prominently placed. Links in Twitter will probably pick up some sort of value in Google’s eyes based on the number of times the link gets passed around – retweeted.

2. Less and less space is being used for organic search results in Google especially. Some companies are going to get pushed down, out of the sweet spot. SEO is becoming ridiculously hard to max out because there are no longer 5 or 10 slots that matter. There are just a couple.

I think small businesses – 1-10 employees are being hammered. It’s becoming more difficult to break into any online business that relies on the search engines. Companies must have budgets to hire people to do videos, images, and now tweets.

I think Google is favoring big business. Big business rules online, just as it did offline. It can’t be any other way, right?

If the Twitter results are really prominent displayed in Google results, whole businesses will develop to take advantage of this chance to get high placement in Google’s SERP’s. Heck, I might jump into that space if the getting looks good.

Will they rank the Twitter data higher than YouTube videos? Higher than image results?

Interesting to see what comes of this – the game is always changing!

2 thoughts on “Real Time Search – A Game Changer”

  1. Vern, very interesting stuff. I think that there are at least two things that will contribute to understanding how these alliances might be successful:

    1). how much weight the live indexing of Twitter has on the factors influencing Search Engine (SE) results. If all other criteria remain the same (doubtful, as you know better than anyone, it changes pretty frequently), and Twitter is added, then the impact of Twitter would be noticeable. If some of the criteria, which is already important in the Search Engine algorithm, are increased, it may offset any effect of a person/business trying to exploit Twitter to bump SE results. I don’t see this 2nd scenario playing out, or why would the alliances be created, other than to gain publicity…which none of these company’s are really starving for? how much weight Twitter has in SE results will play into the significance of shuffling the deck of SE results.

    2). As the alliance between Twitter, Google, and Microsoft, was highly publicized by all three companies, I would imagine that each would look to leverage what this means to the universe of the WWW. It may take a few weeks, or even a few months, but I would anticipate that we’ll hear something from at least one of the three companies. If Twitter makes a ‘significant’ impact on SE results, then it would behoove Twitter to trumpet this, as it would increase their relative importance in Social Media. Right now, Twitter is a free service, devoid of advertising, perhaps look for them to implement a means to create a revenue stream. Maybe after their business explodes even further, after these alliances. Likewise for Bing and Google, they could leverage it to further distance themselves from “second-class” search engines, securing either/both as THE search engine to use on the web. More relevant and real-time results…up to the minute. This is why I think it is a win-win for the SE’s and Twitter, and why they’ll each work to make it more successful. Twitter is sitting in the catbirds seat, they have a unique product as a first mover and the 1A spot in what they do. Google and Bing are fighting it out in the same product line (Search Engines). Twitter has the advantage of two behemoth’s putting a lot of resources into making their indexing of Twitter better than the other’s, as each vies for the top spot in the SE space of the web. As I write this, one thing that comes to mind is that this may be a brilliant move by Twitter, to be acquired by one of the two, as an exit strategy. If Google or Bing, both with VERY deep pockets, can lock out the other by acquiring Twitter, game over for now. In short, I think we’ll see something coming out soon about the impact of these alliances.

    • Thanks for that insightful comment Nick. Twitter no doubt monetized the sharing of their data quite well and they probably don’t need to worry about charging for premium twitter accounts – or anything else for that matter. I just hope we see some more functionality built in – especially being able to filter out junk posts and spam easily. Tweetdeck helps a bit, but when does Twitter become user-friendly?

      Looking forward to seeing all the changes coming up in the search engines with social media influencing results. If you’re playing web 2.0, social media games you’re in a better position than the rest of the world (the bulk of the world).

      Thanks again Nick!

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