Google search wiki: user reviews for web sites

Google has announced its search wiki.

Do I want to customize my search results? No; or at least, only by refining the search, not by forcing sites to the top or inserting my own urls.

Do I want to comment my search results, just for myself? No. I can’t see myself using this, particularly as I deliberately avoid being permanently logged into Google.

What about public comments and ratings? This is the big deal. I wonder how Google will handle this – will the comments apply to web sites? To web pages? Or only to web pages when shown as results for specific searches? In other words, if I get the same site showing up for a different search, will I see the same comments?

Think Amazon, and how the ratings and reviews influence buying decisions (they certainly influence mine). The impact if people see such feedback every time they search on Google could be remarkable. I would love to see the SEO (Search Engine Optimization) folk advising customers, “Look, you actually have to make your site worth visiting, in order to get good reviews on Google.” Though I guess some of them will just offer to write the reviews.

If this sticks, I will be interested to see how it will affect Google’s relationship with its advertisers. Let’s say you do a product search, and Google displays ads inviting you to buy the product, alongside reader comments saying it is garbage. This tension has always existed in independent press that carries advertisements, but it is new to search. On the other hand, as currently described the SearchWiki comments are not displayed by default, but only if you click a SearchWiki link.

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2 thoughts on “Google search wiki: user reviews for web sites”

  1. Yeah, I’ve read about that too… Sounds silly.. I mean why would I want to customize a specific search if I’ll never get back to it once I found the right web page?

  2. Google enabled it for my account… it is pretty pointless, you can move pages to the top but it only displays it for you… you can add comments but if the page isn’t the #1 search result no one will see the comment. We’ll see how this plays out…

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