Google and Its Market Challengers

May 20, 2009

A number of search engines have come and gone since the early days of the Internet. Today’s dominant player, Google, has shown a unique ability to continually rise to challenges from new engines. Wolfram Alpha is the latest engine to enter the ring, but rather than positioning itself as a direct competitor to Google, the engine is a “fact” or “answer” engine that compiles and visualizes data. Bruce, Susan and Virginia consider the role of alternate engines, such as Wolfram Alpha, and the unique functions they perform.

Virginia then talks to Barbara Baker, of Kolbe Market Consultants, about the search evolution and what the search future may hold. In 12 years as a search marketer, Barbara has witnessed the search engine changing of the guards more than once. But as Barbara sees it, a formidable challenger to the Google will depend on the discerning abilities of the human mind — one technology that is difficult to reproduce. Barbara points to Twitter as an example of the kind of info gathering resource to come. Barbara K Baker

Then Maryann, Susan and Virginia look at the way Google responds to challengers. Bloggers pointed out that Google has conveniently rolled out new competitive features in the face of Wolfram Alpha, Cuil and social media sites. Matt Cutts has written a post to dispel the rumors, yet the hosts still believe Google could purposefully release developing projects in order to dampen the other product’s publicity.