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  1. #1
    Chief Betty Victor Hanna's Avatar
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    The more I look at Google, in terms of revenue, I'm coming to realize that their biggest rival is not Yahoo or Ebay. It is their own non-paid listings on the left side of their pages.

    When those non-paid links are clicked on by a user performing a commercial search, they lose the click revenue and someone gets a free visit (I'm not complaining). This is no trivial amount of dollars lost to the Googlemeisters.

    Somewhere along the line (and probably right now), the dollars lost will be too compelling and the model will need to morph in order to capture the lost bucks.

    Froogle not withstanding, perhaps we will see a 'Google for Business' in the future. This could quite be what Amazon is planning with their recently announced A9 project.

    Any thoughts?

    Regards,

    Victor Hanna
    The BettyMills Company
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  2. #2
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    The unnatural, unbalanced nature of strictly paid listings would create a backlash. Google users would cease to be Google users. They would get pooled in with Overture, Kanoodle, etc. and would have to rely on partners who would take their search feed; practically nobody would go straight to Google to perform their search.

  3. #3
    Chief Betty Victor Hanna's Avatar
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    Good point, but I think Google is large enough now, and branded deep enough, that they could launch a 'National Yellow Pages', and it would succeed.

    In fact, I just checked register.com and Google has registered the domain 'googleyellowpages.com'

    It is going to take a company the size and weight of a Google to pull it off. They can probably get it done, because at the moment they are considered fairly neutral, and not 'yet' has the term 'evil' been associated with them.

    The temptation and opportunity for Google is going to be too hard to resist. I would bet we see it in a matter of 3-6 months.

    Regards,

    Victor Hanna
    The BettyMills Company
    http://www.BettyMills.com
    http://affiliates.bettymills.com/
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  4. #4
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    >and not 'yet' has the term 'evil' been associated with them.

    I'm not so sure about that GOOGLE

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  5. #5
    2005 Linkshare Golden Link Award Winner  ecomcity's Avatar
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    Google only has the look inward and attack itself to beat the competition. GoogleII, the new improved model, would be the same relevent result thing with all the noise of Google spammers removed to increase the enduser value at the end of the click.

    Paid search has profit ..not relivence as it's guiding factor. The moment Google doesn't place their loyal searchers statisfaction with the landing page they will drop in popularity.

    Mike & Charlie ...

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  6. #6
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    They have gotten to where they are now because most people (not talking about affiliates/webmasters) like them because of their relevant results. The paid listings happen because of these results. If nobody was using Google no one would advertise. I use Adwords because most people search on Google. If they start to go the way of some SE's in the past LookSmart, Altavista, they will end of like them, but i think they're much smarter than that. Also next year, who knows what will happen when they go IPO. But they shouldn't stray too far from what got them to be #1 in the first place.

    "The successful man is the average man, focused."

  7. #7
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    Yes, the big question is what will happen when they go IPO. The pressure for more revenue will be mounting....
    Diversification is one thing, but they should not ruin what made them number one. They know it, too.
    You can never predict the future.... but I see an inevitable shakedown between Google, MSN, and Yahoo.
    Google has the most relevant results and that is their strength. MSN has a lot of money and resources and that is their strength.
    Yahoo, well, I don't care about yahoo. I can, however, see them resort to more shady alliances (i.e. verisign sitefinder and overture)

  8. #8
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    Can anyone say AdSense?

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  9. #9
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    Yeah, that was what I wanted to say

    Thats when adsense kicks in, second chance for google to get some.
    And they DO get some

    ---------------------------------------
    But it beats a real j.o.b.

  10. #10
    2005 Linkshare Golden Link Award Winner  ecomcity's Avatar
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    My take is Google needs an IPO like it needs a hole in the head. Outside management baggage when your rolling in dough and profitable is not in their best interests. Pet.com was profitable well BEFORE their IPO then the Ad whores and mismanagement took them to the .com graveyard.

    Mike & Charlie ...

    If they won't adopt and feed a bird ..flip them one! BBQ some Gator and remember to flush WhenU..

  11. #11
    ABW Ambassador Andy's Avatar
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    Google is Google because of the search results. Period. When they start taking paid placement, they aren't Google any more. There are others out there who know this, and will be more than happy to take over Google's former spot as Number One in the search engine world.

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  12. #12
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    What Webmaster Mike said. I think them going IPO will be the beginning of the end for Google.

    It is a beautiful thing, to do nothing, and then rest afterwards.~Spanish Proverb

  13. #13
    Chief Betty Victor Hanna's Avatar
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    When you think of Internet Yellow Pages, who comes to mind?

    If you ask me who dominates SE, my reflex is Google, Yahoo, and so on. Books, CD, and Videos, I think Amazon.

    Ask me about online Yellow Pages (online business directory), and I have no reflex response. Nobody owns it yet, but the need is tremendous.

    If Google had a 'Business Yellow Pages' and charged me a flat fee or CPC to list BettyMills in the category of Office & Maintenance Products, I would pay a reasonable amount for the listing without blinking an eye.

    I'm not talking about a crappy line listed thing like Yahoo's directory or DMOZ, or even business.com, but a place you can list by category that brings up localized or national listings in a format similar to the printed version of the yellow pages, graphics and all if you prefer.

    AOL I believe is trying a similar thing, but I passed since they drive more consumer vs business traffic. I also think Thomas Register is trying a similar thing, but they have little brand recognition to the average small-med size business (they are very strong in directories for manufacturers in print medium)

    Business.com is trying but they charge too much and they have virtually -0- branding and name recognition, nor a War Chest of cash like Google likely has.

    Google has the ability to pull this off right now. My number one reason is simple. Besides Google's gigantic size and massive brand, if you recall, at the time Yahoo and others were building their directories, the web was virtually free. You would expect to get listed free and this was considered content back then.

    They soon started to charge a $199 or so fee to get faster placement in their directories, but who the heck knew what the return would be, since they offered no stats or CPC. It was a flat fee.

    Given the success of Google and others in the CPC arena such as Overture, advertisers like me think nothing of reaching into our wallets to pay for clicks or other good performance based advertising. It all makes good sense and people understand it very well. Companies like Ebay were instrumental in driving up the online learning curve for small-med size businesses who wanted to advertise online on a self-service basis. Google was able to leverage some of that momentum.

    Using the web for commerce is now almost a fundamental practice for lots of people. I know that, because when Grandma is posting her quilts on Ebay, we are not in Kansas anymore.

    Google is in a unique position to bring all of their CPC advertisers under one roof, *separate* from their standard search product, where *every* search brings up a paid listing opportunity, more capable of generating a paid click. On their main search product, only a fraction of the result pages generate revenue due to the unpaid listings that are being clicked thru. That fraction, by the way is estimated at $500-$700 Million dollars a year or so.

    The pressure to capture that lost revenue is going to be staggering, particularly if they go down the slippery path of becoming a publicly traded entity.

    If it were me, I would launch both side by side. They can continue to serve up commercial ads on their standard search product, but those ads will come from their commercial product, the Google Yellow Pages.

    Google happens to have the current format for a reason. They stumbled on it, and they won. Now the thing for them to do is leverage the opportunity before it's gone.

    In all reality, if you are looking for Birkenstock shoes in Berkely California, would you search on Google and have to sort through tons of unpaid listings, that may wind up being totally irrelevant - such as a goofy story that was indexed from a WebBlog that happened to mention Birkenstocks- or would you rather go to a yellow pages, and search on Birkenstocks in Berkely and get the 5 stores that carry them?

    Of course, this is all just my opinion...

    Victor Hanna
    The BettyMills Company
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    http://affiliates.bettymills.com/
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  14. #14
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    Not following, you're listed in the online yellow pages:

    http://www.yellowpages.com/SearchRes...ate=NATIONWIDE

    "The successful man is the average man, focused."

  15. #15
    Chief Betty Victor Hanna's Avatar
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    That's pretty funny

    That must be a syndicated link from Overture, since I don't deal with that site, and I'm not even sure I really knew it existed.

    I think I am suggesting something with a bit more horsepower.

    Thanks for the link.

    Victor Hanna
    The BettyMills Company
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  16. #16
    2005 Linkshare Golden Link Award Winner  ecomcity's Avatar
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    Victor the local Yellow Pages phone book company's are more than willing to rape any merchants pocketbook for online listings automated or via manual self serve listing interface. They can syndicate this database to SE shopping portals or just buy CPM Ad space.

    A merchant selling mops, buckets and janitorial supplies can run a paper based 800# listing in all city Yellow pages as their market need is universal. Getting in Thomas Register online -Searchable CD and print is also just a fee away for B2B sales.

    Expecting Google to jump into the totally failed B2B marketplace senerio is nieve. Use Froogle and the new Yahoo product only service and await similar offering from MSN and count your blessings. Your already leveraging the cheapest targeted advertising you'll ever get ...the pay-per-performance affiliate.

    Mike & Charlie ...

    If they won't adopt and feed a bird ..flip them one! BBQ some Gator and remember to flush WhenU..

  17. #17
    Chief Betty Victor Hanna's Avatar
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    Oddly, Google owns the domain GoogleYellowPages.com, and I don't think it was simply to prevent a cybersquatter.

    I'm not really writing all this muck because I want someone to give me a yellowpages that I can advertise on.

    I'm simply trying to see if someone else shares my opinion that Google will be hard pressed not to try and capture what will increasingly be perceived as 'lost revenue'.

    Right now, naysayers would say they can't or won't bite the hand that feeds them, but sooner or later, and I think sooner, a market force greater than you or I will push them to a purely commercial venture other than their current search product.

    Now that said, Froogle in my opinion is a market bomb. We have our feed loaded there, and it is a very weak performer, kind of like Courtney Love in a Hollywood A movie.

    Google has done nothing to really promote Froogle in earnest. They seem to soft launch new features and never really get behind em fully. So, even if they did launch a sort of yellow pages, I'm not confident even THEY would make it work- shame, shame.

    What I am saying is that I believe they will be compelled to capture the lost click revenue by creating a purely commercial, all clicks paid for, online type of 'yellow pages' (I am also not suggesting they call the service Google yellowpages- I'm just using it as a metaphor).

    Again, just my opinion

    Victor Hanna
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  18. #18
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    Google has accomplished the hardest of business marketing tasks. It has established itself as FIRST in the MINE of the consumer when they think search engine. ( like Kleenex for tissues , Xerox for photocopy etc ) When I use to do business strategy consulting , establishing a business as First in the mine of the consumer for a category was the holy grail. Google has done this.

    Now they face two problems. The first is HOW to monetize this enviable position. The second is how to accomplish the first task without destroying their position of being first in this category. ( Like FedEx did. FedEx OWNED the concept of OVERNIGHT DELIVERY. When they line extended they gave up that position and became another "me too" delivery service ) Line extensions usually spell death for a company in the long run. ( Xerox line extending into computers etc ) P&G "line extends" successfully , they create a new line , name , separate from any other product.

    If I was consulting for them , I would explore two avenues. Either , create a new product line , separate from the google name. Or , try and monetize what they have , the most respected search engine around which is what they are attempting to do with google ads and adsense. I personally would go one step further. ( and everyone here is going to HATE me for this suggestion ) Google should explore the idea that each and every 1st position ranking is THEIRS. ( with a consumer disclaimer ) They should use this position to sell a product they own , or affiliate for. This would make them the world's largest affiliate , with all the revenue benefits thereof. This revenue would ensure their continuation as a basically free , relevant search engine ( except for the top listing ) We would continue to receive all that free traffic we currently enjoy for years to come , albeit a little less , and we would have a powerful affiliate ally who could fight things like parasites , alone if necessary.

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  19. #19
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    >In all reality, if you are looking for Birkenstock shoes in Berkely California, would you search on Google and have to sort through tons of unpaid listings, that may wind up being totally irrelevant - such as a goofy story that was indexed from a WebBlog that happened to mention Birkenstocks- or would you rather go to a yellow pages, and search on Birkenstocks in Berkely and get the 5 stores that carry them?

    Keep your eye open for these type of tags.
    Gigablast test geographic metatags

    title Birkenstock shoes in Berkely California /title
    meta http-equiv="Content-Type" content="text/html;charset=iso-8859-1"
    meta name="description" content="We sell Birkenstock shoes in Berkely California"
    meta name="keywords" content="Birkenstocks shoes Birkenstock"
    meta name="MSSmartTagsPreventParsing" content="TRUE"
    meta name="zipcode" content="94701"
    meta name="city" content="BERKELEY"
    meta name="state" content="California"
    meta name="country" content="usa, united states of america"
    meta name="classification" content="products,product"

  20. #20
    Chief Betty Victor Hanna's Avatar
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    Very well stated although I don't fully agree on paragraph 3 as you somewhat expected.

    So from my point of view, here lies the dillema: Knowing that line extension spells the kiss of death, which I fully agree with, the tempation and the pressure will still be enormous.

    If I had to be the one to come up with a plan, what I would do is the following: (and I would still say there is considerable risk at work here to the flagship google.com product)

    1 - Begin the process of requiring AdWords customers to get more specific with regard to geographic regions which their business services, and category of product or service. Do this via a prompt the next time the adwords customer logs in- make it simple and as least obtrusive as possible.

    2 - Quietly move all AdWords commercial ads out onto a separate invisible location (perhaps 'Googlebiz.com' or something like that), searchable by product/service, and geography serviced. Work out the kinks and the formatting issues.

    3 - Have the flagship site google.com become an 'AdSense' customer of Googlebiz, so the ads still appear on Google as normal. Optically, no person can tell this change has been made.

    4 - Leave the adwords self service interface on both the google flagship product and the googlebiz site so you can access it from either.

    5 - Launch the purely commercial googlebiz site. Now if I want to find Birkenstocks in Berkely, I search on product and location and I get my purely commercial results instead of unpaid listings about the Birkenstock family farm and other irrelevant listings.

    I just need one person to agree with me today and I will be happy I don't ask for much.

    Regards,

    Victor Hanna
    The BettyMills Company
    http://www.BettyMills.com
    http://affiliates.bettymills.com/
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  21. #21
    Chief Betty Victor Hanna's Avatar
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    Adam,

    I like the tags, but what if half of the Birkenstock dealers in Berkely don't maintain websites where the tags could be deployed.

    The directory would still provide a listing for any business, website or not.

    Regards,

    Victor Hanna
    The BettyMills Company
    http://www.BettyMills.com
    http://affiliates.bettymills.com/
    BettyMills ABW Forum

  22. #22
    Full Member c4's Avatar
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    I have to say I agree with you and now THIS ( http://abw.infopop.cc/6/ubb.x?a=tpc&...9&m=1026059444 ) makes even more sense to me ...



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