Search…searching…Search Engines

Earlier there were search engines and search directories. Searchers  would go to Google, Yahoo! MSN, Altavista, Askjeeves, Dmoz etc to search for anything they wanted.

Those were the days when we talked and discussed about the search engines…which one is better…Google or Yahoo! or Altavista or maybe MSN?

Directories like Yahoo! and Dmoz directories were and are very organized and since submissions were verified and accepted manually, one was sure to get authentic sites. In fact, if your site is registered in search directories such as, Dmoz and Yahoo! Directory it would give your site a lot of mileage and still does. Google was still in the process of bettering its search results page and we would quite often get a lot of irrelevant sites on searching.

From then and now, what has changed?

a) Search engines have really got better at the game, the results displayed on the SERPs are almost always bang on. Just type in the keyword on any search engine like Google, Yahoo!, Bing, and you are bound to get an answer to your query in a jiffy.

B )Today we are spoilt for choices… If it exists, it’s on Google they say! Besides that we have a choice of social networking sites like Facebook, Stumble upon, an authoritative site such as Wikipedia… what else can we ask for?

c) Almost everyone has any information they need at their fingertips, how fascinating is that! In a country like India, even if you visit the remotest of location, you will always find mobile stores selling mobile phones and connections. Cable operators provide internet connections as well. There are surfing joints in every locality.

The search engine wars still exist but today almost everyone knows Google and Yahoo! And I think Google is still in the lead because of it’s clean interface, it still has just that search box and therefore minimizes any sort of distraction for the users. The searchers go to Google to search and they do just that. Yahoo! Which is an equally good search engine, probably is the 2nd best choice because of quite a few factors but I would say that its interface is a bit distracting.

Essentially because it is more than a search engine, it is more of a search portal, a one stop shop for everything, which is great but to a searcher, it helps, if the searcher can go to a page an search without too many distractions.

Google has many of the features that Yahoo! has but because of the clean uncluttered interface and of course relevant results, it is so popular. Social networking sites have got even more popular, if your friend likes something, you would like to check it out too, right? And that’s how it works.

Most people are connected to Facebook from their mobiles, in fact quite a major proportion of the population search from their mobiles. With search and online experience getting more and more sophisticated and user friendly, I wonder what is next?

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