Wednesday, August 15, 2007

Subject Specific Search Engines

Heck! I am looking for some information and all I have is a ‘generalist’ There was a time when I was in awe of Google search engine for its simplicity – the simple one step search, the gigantic result base and that too in fraction of seconds. Phew! But what after that? I still have to spend a huge time getting to the relevant information. Google (or for that matter any other search engine) doesn’t help me reach relevant information quickly.

Websites without any optimization for search engines may never make it to the first few search result pages. May be that information would be helpful to me, but since I don’t get to see it in the first few pages of the search result and I lose my patience, I never reach that piece of information.

In India there are Sunday ‘Haats’ which is a make-shift weekly market where you get everything from grocery, electronics, durables, appliances, clothing to almost everything one needs to buy. The only thing a buyer needs is lot of time to search for the right item from that maze. Instead, if the buyer goes to a particular shop that sells the item, she will spend little time getting what she wants.

Similarly, instead of searching for information in an all-in-one search engine, if there are specialized search engines for various fields, the users can find ‘relevant’ information quickly. To cite a few examples, there can be search engines dedicated to sciences, medicine, or the engines can be product-specific.

This would also make a positive impact on advertising as the advertisers can effectively focus on their audience base. With Subject Specific Search Engines, site owners can list their sites on relevant search engines. Just like advertising on a single outdoor hoarding is not enough and ensuring that the product is advertised at strategic locations; similarly a website should be listed on relevant search engines for better effectiveness.

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