Google Search plus Your World – What is Google Up To?

In yet another revolutionary move, Google has announced what it has dubbed Search Plus Your World! This is indeed a radical transformation as Google is pushing its search results to be more personal.

I’m sure you have heard of this update from Google. Well, what I want to do here is to take a look at Search plus Your World based on some of the issues arising from the update and then give a word or two of my opinion.

Search plus Your World Announced

Making the announcement on Tuesday 10th January, 2012 Amit Singhal said on the Google Official blog:

“Google Search has always been about finding the best results for you. Sometimes that means results from the public web, but sometimes it means your personal content or things shared with you by people you care about. These wonderful people and this rich personal content is currently missing from your search experience. Search is still limited to a universe of webpages created publicly, mostly by people you’ve never met. Today, we’re changing that by bringing your world, rich with people and information, into search.”

That is really an interesting way to put it. All in all what Google has just done is to combine personalized results which was first introduced in June 2005  and has gone through a couple of updates and social search results which have been since October 2009.  These two seperate algorithms that have been improved over the years have now become one. Danny Sullivan writing at SearchEngineLand.com quoted Amit Singhal to have said:

“The social search algorithm, and the personal search algorithm, and the personalized search algorithm are actually one algorithm now, and we are merging it in a way that is very pleasant and useful.”

Google introduces Search plus Your World!

But To What Use Is Google Search Plus Your World?

As a new addition to the many innovative ways Google has been fine-tuning search results, one will want to ask why Search Plus Your World?

So far, I think Google is only trying to enhance the ever growing social nature of the internet.  This is clear from the official post:

“We’re transforming Google into a search engine that understands not only content, but also people and relationships. We began this transformation with Social Search, and today we’re taking another big step in this direction by introducing three new features:

  1. Personal Results, which enable you to find information just for you, such as Google+ photos and posts—both your own and those shared specifically with you, that only you will be able to see on your results page;
  2. Profiles in Search, both in autocomplete and results, which enable you to immediately find people you’re close to or might be interested in following; and,
  3. People and Pages, which help you find people profiles and Google+ pages related to a specific topic or area of interest, and enable you to follow them with just a few clicks. Because behind most every query is a community.

Together, these features combine to create Search plus Your World. Search is simply better with your world in it, and we’re just getting started.”

But will this really help us better when searching for information on Google.com? Right now, we not fully appreciate that until we put it to full use. However, there are already issues with Facebook and Twitter, unarguably two of the biggest social media sites with the largest database of user content.  Search plus Your World does not include results from these two social media giants.

My Opinion: It is rational to reason that if Google really want to make search results social and personal then the duo of Facebook and Twitter must be considered. But do we blame Google if these social media sites decide to restrict Google from crawling their databases?I don’t think Google should be blamed.

Here’s what Danny Sullivan reported Amit Singhal as saying:

“Facebook and Twitter and other services, basically, their terms of service don’t allow us to crawl them deeply and store things. Google+ is the only [network] that provides such a persistent service. Of course, going forward, if others were willing to change, we’d look at designing things to see how it would work.”

Is Google Favoring Its Own Content?

I must say this is one area where I’ve suspected Google of playing foul since the launch of Google+. When Google Authorship was announced and every site or blog desiring to implement the update was required to provide a link back to Google+, I suspected that Google was only systematically pushing the social media platform up on the search results.

However, the accusations that Google is favoring its own content over other social media sites was rebuffed by Google’s Executive Chairman, Eric Schmidt.

In a response to a statement by Twitter a few hours after the announcement of Search plus Your World, which read in part:

“We’re concerned that as a result of Google’s changes, finding this information will be much harder for everyone. We think that’s bad for people, publishers, news organizations and Twitter users.”

Google issued its own statement, through a post on Google+ saying:

“We are a bit surprised by Twitter’s comments about Search plus Your World, because they chose not to renew their agreement with us last summer (http://goo.gl/chKwi), and since then we have observed their rel=nofollow instructions.”

My Opinion: As a big fan of Google I truly believe that Google is doing more to improve the way we found information on the internet and for this, the other social media sites should find ways of working with it instead of the rivalry we have seen for some time now. If however they don’t want to work with Google then they should find ways of building their own search engines to compete with Google!

Well, as usual I will be glad to hear from you. What do you think of Search plus Your World? Do you think Google is justified in ignoring Facebook and Twitter with such a major update as this?

Meanwhile what this video introducing Search plus Your World. Do you see us doing all of these with Google very soon?

Note: Though Search plus Your World is now live, it is not everyone that will see it until it fully launches over the next few days. It’s only for those signed-in to Google.com and searching in English.

About Chadrack

Chadrack Irobogo is a web entrepreneur, blogger, business coach and author. He's a vastly experienced online marketer and runs a digital marketing agency where he helps local businesses drive valuable online leads. On this blog he shares business strategies and proven marketing tactics that delivers tangible results for SMBs and enterprise bloggers.

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27 Comments on “Google Search plus Your World – What is Google Up To?”

  1. They need to create Google Authorship to push google+ and by doing this their is a tendency to bit the popularity of facebook..good luck to google.

    1. @Becca,

      I quite agree with you. From all indications, Google is simply using their knowledge of seo to make G+ more popular! Thanks for the comment.

    1. @James,

      Well, it may interest you to know that Google has come out to say that Google+ is not really a social media site! Of course not many of us will believe that.

      Nevertheless, I’ve believed that Google has a much bigger purpose for Google plus. What they are doing right now is simply working towards their plan. You can expect more surprising moves in the near future!

  2. Great write up Chadrack!

    I did check it out the day it was launched as curiosity got the better of me, though after I tried disabling the option, I was not able to come back to the search plus option.

    I did log out, then log in again and had my G+ open as well, but to date I am just not able to log into the search plus option. It does seem wonderful and I do like the option of switching it off if you are not interested in using it, which gives you an option of choosing either of the things as well.

    I guess as you rightly mentioned, it may take a few days before it is fully launched and they may be still trying to sort out things at their end. I think G+ is truly going to be the number one social networking places in times to come.

    Thanks so much for sharing and have a great weekend 🙂

    1. @Harleena Singh,

      It’s clear that they are testing the waters and watching for the reactions. I want to believe also that with the issues arising from the launch may just be taken care of before there will be a world wide integration.

      About G+ being the #1 social networking site, G+ will actually be more than a social networking site. Google is kind of pulling all of its structures into that site. There is something they have not opened to us. We just have to wait and see what that will be, or don’t you think so?

  3. I think this is very interesting. Google is really pushing us towards Google+ and we’ll see how the public likes it in time. There’s something rather comforting to me right now to think that Facebook is all personal and Google is all anonymous. Not sure they will be able to blend into the personal side of things as easily as they would like.

    I will definitely try it, though, and see how I like it. This all reminds me of something someone said to me when Google+ launched, “Facebook is going to be the new Myspace.” We’ll see.

    1. @Darci,

      You’ve just mentioned here that I think we need to take note of though I don’t totally agree with it. When you said, “Facebook is all personal and Google is all anonymous” you opened up a wide possibility for understanding!

      You should understand that social media is actually about being personal. It is about interacting at the personal level and Facebook still have this to its advantage. You will understand that the about 800 million users on Facebook are very active on the site. But this is not the same for Google plus right now.

      I’m seeing a situation where, with what Google is doing with the site, more or internet marketers will be using the site because of the seo value thereof! Now, this is my own assessment but I’m sure it will happen. Businesses and marketers are going to find the site more valuable than those who wants a more personal interaction.

      What this will translate to therefore is that Facebook will continue to the socially minded users while Google+ cater to the business minded ones. Do you see what I see now? So, if you’re into business online you have to begin to make the choice now. Or don’t you think so?

      1. @Chadrack,

        I believe I understand what you’re saying. Yes, I suppose when I said Facebook was “personal” I meant “social”. And, yes, with Google’s obvious push of Google+ and the “Social Search” they are definitely making a play for the more social piece of the internet pie.

        As far as whether or not we have to make a choice between social and business, I don’t know if that’s necessarily true. I think businesses online have been learning with Facebook that having communication with their customers in a social environment can be very profitable. It can also be kind of fun.

        I think with Google moving it’s way into the social realm the lines will become even more blurred between “social” and “business”. We as businesses must be willing to open up to the fact that social media could be changing the way we do business forever.

        1. @Darci,

          We are definitely on the same page. Ok, I think it’s the terminologies we are using that needs some explaining. 🙂

          Now, it is definite that we must accept the fact that social media has changed the way we do business today. Besides, that Google’s getting involved in the social realm, the lines will become even more blurred between “social” and “business”!

          However, when I said, what is happening will translate to a situation where those who are “socially minded” will choose Facebook while Google+ will some how cater to the “business minded” ones, I was not really undermining the importance of businesses being “socially” minded. Rather, what I mean is that, facebook may cater to those who want a more “personal” interaction. Those who do not have a business gain in mind.

          For example, those who are the social networks to play online games with their friends, those who want to interact with their family members by sharing pictures other things. Since Facebook has played this part very well over the years, this group of social media users will stick to facebook.

          But with Google+, something more than personal is already built in. This is what Google is working out for all of us to see right now. Encouraging businesses to take advantage of all that Google has, webmaster tools, search engine optimization tools and other marketing tools. This is what I’m saying the savvy online business must not neglect right now.

          With search plus your world rolled out many businesses will definitely concentrate more on Google+ pages than Facebook pages. Well, I can really say for sure but I’m seeing that happening.

          Did I make this clear now?

    1. @Jass,

      You have a point there. Google already know the power social media welds on the net. Google+ is therefore Google’s tool of harnessing that power!

  4. The only advantage of this new feature is that sometimes it can be useful for me to find out if a certain article was estimated by someone of my friends or not. But generally saying, this feature was offered to popularize social networks and that’s all

    1. No, it’s really that it was launch to popularize social networks rather it’s launched to take advantage of the social networks! It is a declaration that we can not ignore the power of social media any more!

  5. We will never know what Google is really up to regarding this new technology. But to me it is just right that Google has this Search plus Your World thing, to me they are really taking advantage of their search engine and optimizing it capabilities. If Facebook happens to have its own search engine I think they will also have something like these.

    1. @Gray,

      That Google is strengthening it’s hold in the search engine market is quite clear. In fact, after considering this issue for some time, I’m beginning to believe that Google is quite aware of the importance of the internet to the business world and they are only working to position Google plus pages as a good option for businesses who want to promote their product/service with it. With the success of Facebook business pages Google want to ensure that more businesses turn to G+ pages. If this work fine for them then we will be seeing more businesses abandoning Facebook for Google Plus! Or what do you think?

  6. Hi, Chadrack,
    I, too, am a big Google fan and I always put them them in the first place. That is why I believe that rivalry is not a solution and cannot solve anything. Others should find a way how to adapt, because Google is always trying its best to improve. And come on, let’s be honest – who can, anyway, compete with Google by far?

    1. @EleonoraEOF,

      You definitely have a point there. What’s the need to for competing when the web is wide enough for everyone. If the others want to stay relevant they should better understand their market and find ways of serving that market better. This way it will be to the benefit of everyone.

      Thanks for the comment. Looking forward to seeing more of you!

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