Can Little Guys Survive Google’s Commercial Intent?

Is Google making search better with all their recent changes? If you ask 100 people, you’re probably going to get 100 different answers.

But there is a lot — and I mean a lot — of evidence to suggest that Google’s real intention may be to increase their bottom line. Do you think it’s coincidental that such major changes have come just prior to the holiday shopping season?

The FTC has taken notice, too. Here’s a quote from a NY Times article:

“The areas of inquiry include accusations of manipulating the search results it displays to favor Google commerce services it has developed like Google Shopping for buying goods and Google Places for advertising local restaurants and businesses. In the civilian subpoenas, the F.T.C. calls this ‘preferencing.’ “

Limited Search Results

There are a number of ways that Google is limiting the kinds of results you get from a search. They say that all these changes will improve the user experience and provide valuable search results. Maybe that’s true. Maybe it isn’t. If it is, something’s very wrong.

Maybe the fact that you often get multiple search results from the same domain is simply because the other domains didn’t make the cut in terms of “quality content.” Or maybe, like many people believe, it’s just one more way to push revenue.

How? Well, if you’re constantly struggling and can’t seem to get any Google love anymore, maybe you’ll turn to their PPC (pay per click) ads instead. Just possibly, Google’s hoping that when you get frustrated with the organic search results, you’ll start clicking on the ads more often. [Read more...]