Some people who work with SEO are concerned about Google’s launch of a web page focused on realtime search. We take a look at what realtime search means for web users and web site owners.
Google’s Realtime Search is a relatively new concept that focuses on returning search results in real-time that focus on combination of social networking posts and news items as they are posted. Rather than using the aged results we see in most search results, this information would always be very fresh. Google has set up a web page where you can perform Realtime Searches so that you can see how it works.
They have also set up a brief infomercial that gives you a good overview of what to expect with this new search method.
One of the interesting features is that you can see what types of discussions are taking place on a given topic in almost any geographic location on the planet. Given how heated the political situation is around the world, that can be useful if you would like to see different perspectives on a topic.
The concern with realtime search is that is that it could replace the current search methods and destroy all the efforts that web site owners have put into search engine optimization. While that is a possibility, it is not likely to occur. Quite frankly, most of the posts found on Twitter, FaceBook, MySpace and other social networks are so irrelevant that they are useless.
Realtime search will probably end up being a niche and an additional method for searching. Replacing the current search model with one focused on a mix of social networks and news would likely be disastrous for Google because a large segment of their searchers just do not care about social networks. The fact that they gave it its own web page rather than integrating it further with mainstream search results just supports our niche theory.
At this time, it looks like the Realtime Search Results are dominated by Twitter tweets. Tweets are a mixed bag of information because they can be from legitimate news sources, but also from the millions of blogs and other web sites that express opinions.
Google recently began integrating Twitter tweets, Yahoo Answers articles and other news items into their mainstream search results, but at this point they are not dominating the results. Google has real-time access to Twitter tweets due to a deal signed with Twitter in October of 2009. They recently signed similar deals with FaceBook and MySpace.
Let’s hope that they do not go overboard with this concept. Recent algorithm changes and the introduction of personalized search have had a negative impact on the rankings for some web sites. Other changes have pushed organic search rankings down in favor of artificially injected videos and other social media listings that would normally never have much chance of ranking well. The more that these types of artificially injected listings are inserted into search results, the less relevant the search results tend to become.