We’ve all seen realtime search integrated into the organic search results. When you’ve run a search for a phrase that indicated that perhaps you wanted current information you likely saw a realtime search box with Twitter results scrolling through it. Google’s realtime results have been discontinued both in search results integration as well as as a separate service at http://www.google.com/realtime (URL not hyperlinked as the page is no longer there). As of July 2nd, the deal between Twitter and Google is over and it doesn’t appear that Google will be looking to re-sign.
In a quote to SEO Czar Danny Sullivan over at Search Engine Land, the folks at Google noted:
“Since October of 2009, we have had an agreement with Twitter to include their updates in our search results through a special feed, and that agreement expired on July 2.
While we will not have access to this special feed from Twitter, information on Twitter that’s publicly available to our crawlers will still be searchable and discoverable on Google.”
This makes one wonder, will Google by working to push yet another Google property into the results? Will they be finding ways to make marketers, website owners and then the general public use Google+ for it’s power in the realtime results which Google assures us will be coming back. To this they respond:
“Our vision is to have google.com/realtime include Google+ information along with other realtime data from a variety of sources.”
Of course, one might be tempted to ask how any realtime results sets can be considered adequate in the absence of Twitter. Facebook is powerful and while I know a few people who treat it as realtime and are there often, most people use Twitter for the flurry of up-to-date links and content, and Facebook for informing friends and colleagues about the more interesting and topical occurrences in their lives (ofter personal). So isn’t Twitter the more reliable source of realtime data?
Only time will tell if this move works for Google. I definitely like some of the features in Google+ but that as an aside, does its success mean that realtime results from Twitter should be omitted? I would say no and I have a hunch that we’ll be hearing cries of unfair competition, monopolistic tendencies, etc. in the near future as this move is clearly an attempt at keeping Google searchers on Google properties. As much as I may like those properties, that doesn’t seem to appease the FTC.
SEO news blog post by Dave Davies, CEO @ 5:00 pm on July 5, 2011