Tuesday, October 24, 2006

Vertical Search is Back!

With the addition of the new Google Coop Custom Search Engine (CSE), I'm now predicting an increase in the number of vertical search web properties. I'm also thinking that this new feature could be WAY more important than anyone is giving it credit for.

Why? consider...

1) Google has just given us the opportunity to segment their database. This is huge! The average person has simply never had a filtering tool of this magnitude. Don't want spam? Find a CSE that fits your search.

2) Google has found a way to add a human element to their top web property. People add the element of 'authority', and if you trust someone, you can trust their collection. Frankly, that's as Web 2.0 as we've seen out of G!

3) Vertical Search is now possible for anyone and everyone willing to take the time. Why delve into spidering technology when Google can power your application. Sure, it's not a business model, but Google's revenues are driven by partnering up with mom-n-pop web developers. And by sharing a cut of the ad revenue, you can expect vertical search portals to be back in vogue.

4) Librarians now have a huge tool at their fingertips. Can you say Subject Collections? Dust off your collection development skills people, we're being turned loose on the Google generation! Who uses the raw-Google search anymore, anyway? keep your spam, I'm using a Librarian-enabled search engine! ;-)

5) This concept leverages the Google's Adsense revenue stream better than ANY they've previously come up with. Imagine thousands of vertical search properties, and some of them potentially creating viable web-brands. Google takes a cut of the ad revenue on every one of them, their brand becomes even more powerful (if that's possible...), and website owners have once again found Google religion ($$$).

Update - Emma has a good post up comparing Rollyo & Google CSE, with a couple of law firm-esque practical examples.


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