Perhaps when the top result is the best result – and it’s a paid link.
Look at the image of my search results above.
I just now wanted to find the NLCS playoff schedule. I like baseball. I follow the National League, (NL) for the most part. Just about every fan of baseball (and there are millions of them) knows that “NLCS” is code for “National League Championship Series.
So I typed “NLCS playoff schedule” into Google. The results were terrible. The first result was for 2007, and it’s October! Playoffs, you know? Happening now? Google was pretty good at giving me the right results when I typed “Olympics” in last August. So I thought it was pretty safe to assume I’d get 2008 playoff schedules when I typed in that query. Alas, it was not to be.
So just in case Google was feeling a bit addled tonight, I added a “2008″ to the end to clarify: NLCS playoff schedule 2008.
The results are above. Of the *organic* results, the first is a blogspot blog – not worth clicking on, I mean, I wanted the official sked, right?This one is just for the Dodgers, and I’m a fan of blogs but…I didn’t want the Dodger’s sked, I wanted the whole NLCS. The second result was worse – an article from a baseball site, and it’s about player health. Huh?
The third site is a attempt to sell me tickets.
Google, am I not being specific enough for you? I very much doubt that your algorithms can’t figure out how to deliver exactly what I was asking for, especially during the playoffs.
But, wait a minute, there is one result that, should I click on it, will give me the answer I wanted. It’s at the top, and hey, look, Google even HIGHLIGHTED it for me!
Oh wait, doesn’t that highlight mean it’s a paid link? Oh well, never mind that. It’s the first link, and we all know that everyone clicks on the first link. Google may have failed at organic search, but it saved its bacon – and paid for it – through AdWords. Let’s just hope for Google’s sake that folks continue to ignore that “I’m feeling lucky” button. Unless, of course, it’s routed through a paid link.