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MOH

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For anyone who wants to get an idea of just what kind of SEO headaches Google Instant is going to cause you, you can get a look at how it works by searching through your google account (assuming you have one), at Google.

Although for the moment it's only global search results (and personalised too). Adding &pws=0 or country specific parameters to the url doesn't seem to work.

From an end user point of view, I'm in two minds about it. It's pretty distracting to see the SERPs jump around whenever I hit a key, especially if it decides to add or remove local business results. But then it's new, in a few months I probably won't even notice.

It's definitely going to have a big impact on PPC. Impressions for both adwords and organics are counted whenever the user stops typing for 3 seconds, which is going to boost impressions. Especially in the early days, as people pause to look at the SERPs changes while they type, and play around with it a bit.
 

MOH

New Member
Yeah, it's rolling out to the UK, Canada and a few others next week, so probably a while before it hits Ireland.

My immediate thought is more impressions recorded for ads which users don't really have a chance to see is going to lower CTR, which will hit quality score, and in turn CPC = more money for Google.
Not sure how it'll affect organics but you're probably going to have more people hitting longer tail terms
 

mneylon

Administrator
Staff member
I ended up using it last night by accident and wasn't overly happy with the experience. It's new, but I'm not sure if I'll want to get used to it (as a user)
 

link8r

New Member
More searches and less clicks though.

I think it will encourage search. @krishnade held a webinar last Thursday (the 9th) with Anne Donnelly, John Ring, Jill Whalen, Yoast and myself.

I think the issues we identified are, in no particular order,


  1. Loss of serendipity
  2. More similar type searches - might be good for SEO - almost "corralling" users like sheep
  3. Higher impressions and lower CTR - knock on cost for AdWords users
  4. Lower CTR on organics - also an issue (seldom discussed though)
 

mneylon

Administrator
Staff member
I suspect that a lot of "normal" users are going to disable it.
It's also not a given that Google will even keep it.
 

link8r

New Member
I rather hope they do pull it.

Google Personalised search has caused such nightmares. I have spoken to lots of people who think they're site is doing really well in Google (until they sign out/turn it off) or see completely different results to everyone else. I dont see how the user has benefitted in any way but for both "tools"/"features" I only see confusion.

I think Google need to rethink their KPI's. Getting a search to 0.5 seconds is pretty good. if people type slow, then that's a people problem.

If they could fix things like accepting that we don't use American English (although one US SEO did point out to me that with 350 million people, most people speak American English - Christ almighty). Like we use Solicitor not Lawyer (I'm thinking Ireland, UK, Canada, RSA, Australia, NZ, other people who use English as a second language like India, Europe etc) and optimisation not optimization.
 

Gareth_Boyd

New Member
I'm sort of looking forward to what the challenges may be in the future of Google Instant. Also its rather funny seeing people worry that SEO is 'dead', at least that gives me some sort of laughter during work!
 

Alerner

Member
Effect on traffic of Google live today?

So it went live in ireland this morning? Where's the discussion? Is it just me?

Looking at Analytics, it looks like my traffic has been cut in half. As searchers see the bigger brand name come up first in search, they stop and click on it. People are not waiting to type in the long tail keywords. once they see a few results, they're off.
 

Alerner

Member
OK, an update ... it wasn't that bad. I'll blame it on lagging Google Analytics data yesterday which seemed to suggest some real significant drop... but no real evidence found of a major drop when looking back today.
 

MOH

New Member
I think it's actually going to be a bit of a pain for services targeting dublin areas, who were ranked well on the local business results.

For one I'm looking at at the moment, as soon as I get as far as 'service name dublin', I get a LBR map for results "near Dublin, Co Fingal", which is potentially going to take away some traffic. Adding a space gives me results for Dublin 15, and annoyingly 'service name dublin 1' also stays on Dublin 15.

It doesn't help that the local business results for the particular service are already half full of spammers who've entered themselves on Google Maps about 6 different times. On an LBR list that's changing with each keystroke, the same names popping up repeatedly are probably going to have an advantage.

I think it's devalued LBR listings for some areas anyway.
 

link8r

New Member
Its an interesting subject. LBR was too easy - there was no quality system or measurement system. It is still easier to spam than the organics and merging the two was, I think, a disaster. It was a good idea (hyper local) but horribly exectued.
 
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