Fortnight Feature No. 7 – Search Engines
The Search Engine Ecosystem
During the previous couple dozen years, the wilds of the Internet have settled into something of an identifiable ecosystem. And it doesn’t come as any news that Google is at the top of that ecosystem, determining the behavior and relationships of others, like businesses and customers. In fact, you might say that the current relationship between businesses and Google looks something like this:
There is this weird, almost cute symbiotic relationship between Google and businesses. The crocodile snatches up a gazelle but needs clean teeth for its health, so he lets the birds in to help. Similarly, Google attracts tons of customers, but needs to monetize for its health, so it lets businesses in to pick at the straggling customers stuck between its teeth. Or something like that.
An important thing to remember, though, is that this is a more accurate metaphor than one that compares Google to an undisputed king of the land, impervious to dissent. Google is just as much a part of the online ecosystem as everyone else, and many of its decisions are motivated by this awareness. For every bird it smashes in its jaws for using bad SEO teeth-cleaning techniques, it risks upsetting the entire balance of the arrangement. If the businesses go elsewhere, Google’s health will suffer, and won’t be able to catch those water-grazing customers anymore.
So what have we learned?
- Google and businesses have a strange, symbiotic relationship
- Google is NOT the ultimate authority and is vulnerable to the same online ecosystem
- It’s “Metaphor-Monday”
Below is a list of resources we uncovered during our two-week investigation of search engines. And don’t mind Bing over there in the reeds. He’s just waiting for his turn.
News and Coverage