All about Google’s Instant / Predictive search feature launched September 8, 2010

Google Instant And The Power Of Suggestion

It's going to be a long time (weeks or months) until anyone has a complete understanding of how Google Instant will change search and search marketing. The change Google has made isn't just to the user interface. They've changed how search works by dramatically increasing the power of Google Suggestions. And most importantly they've changed the search experience which will undoubtedly change the way people behave and react to the results they get from Google. Search marketers—of both the paid and organic varieties—are going to feel the impact of all these changes. Instant [...]

How The “Focus On First” Helps Hide Google’s Relevancy Problems

In January, I was invited to speak to Google's search quality team about issues I had with Google's search results. My topic? For queries where I know a subject really well, I often found Google provided some pretty poor results in the top listings along with the good ones. I wanted more perfection! With the focus this week on Google Instant Search providing fast answers, I figured it was worth revisiting the quality of results. This post is largely built off the things I presented back in January, issues that are still continuing with Google. It explains how a "focus on first" can help cov [...]

Yahoo Had Instant Search In 2005 & Dropped It; Bing Kind Of Has It Now

Google's Instant Search might be a "fundamental shift in search," as described yesterday by Marissa Mayer, but it's certainly not new. Yahoo Instant Search On September 15, 2005, Yahoo launched an innovative search tool called Yahoo Instant Search. It was available at, but that URL leads to a 404 page now. Danny Sullivan wrote about Yahoo Instant Search the day it launched: Yahoo's given the heads-up that a new Instant Search feature is to be offered by the time this story goes live. Type in a word, and Instant Search will show you an answer for popular queries [...]

Google Instant Search: The Complete User’s Guide

Google Instant promises to change the way people search. Speaking at today's announcement, Google's Marissa Mayer called it a "fundamental shift in search." As with any big Google announcement, there are questions: Who can use Google Instant? Can I opt out or turn off Google Instant? Why am I not seeing it when I do a Google search? Answers to those questions and more are below, in our Google Instant User's Guide. What Is Google Instant? Google Instant is a feature that predicts what you're searching for and shows results as you type. It uses Google's autocomplete technology to show predi [...]

Will Google Instant Kill The Long Tail?

From a paid search perspective, the first impression of Google Instant is alarming. On September 8, Google announced Google Instant. This new feature uses a predicated query technique to establish the user’s intent. Although part of me finds Google Instant really intriguing, as a paid search marketer I have my concerns, despite Google's assurance that this feature will not impact the ranking of ads (see Danny Sullivan's notes about Google Instant from live blogging at the press conference.) Those concerns range from interesting, to wait and see, to alarming. Below are my early observation [...]

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