Google (Not Chrome) Is The New Browser – Remix

On from Analytics Culture, Interactive Marketing, Regular, Web Analytics

My loyal and very dear readers must remember this little post I committed some time ago called Google Is The New Browser. I just wanted to add a couple of comments from the trenches.

Last week, I gave 5 sessions of the same class WebTrends – Understanding Reports & Introduction to Web Analytics. I had about 37 people all together over the 5 days. Training is a part of my work I love, because I have the opportunity to meet a lot of people. I usually do it on location at companies/organizations, and I get to learn about so many different business and analytical challenges. Training feeds my consulting work so much, I sometimes feel that it’s not me who is the expert.

I always take a few minutes here and there throughout the day to survey the participants on their online habits. Since I published the post I referred to above, I also got to observe them when I ask them to go to some URLs. This week this pattern of using Google instead of the URL field of the browser again jumped at my face. I had here people in public administration from various age groups and technical levels, calling up Google, typing the URL, or just a couple of words, and then clicking on the link to get there. I mean, I was simply asking “Go to”, and some of them used Google instead.

I noticed that for at least half the participants!!

Now, again, is this behavioral pattern really search? I think not. This bears the profound question now of what organic search actually is. Should we then treat all brand/domain related search as not being search? If not, how can we, in our Web Analytics tool, make the difference?

Next time you are with some people in front of computers, observe them when they want to go to a specific site. Better yet, tell them to go to a site and provide the actual domain name, and watch what they use to get there.

Let me know if you’ve witness it around you.


8 responses to “Google (Not Chrome) Is The New Browser – Remix

  1. Et moi je suis desolais que j’ai fait le meme! I mean, the other day I was copying names of companies from a list. But some had spaces and some hyphens in their company name. so I was too lazy to remove those and just pasted the name into the google box in the browser instead of the address box.

    just sharing because I felt kind of embarrassed about that 😎

  2. Hi AKin,

    Well, I guess there is no reason to be ashamed now, since everybody seems to do it now. I watched my wife, and she does it too!

    Now that one only needs to key in a keyphrase in Chrome URL field, the browser is the search engine and the search engine is the browser. Interestingly enough, when I use a kwyphrase in the URL field with my installation of Chrome, I get results in Live Search!

    Thanks for commenting!

  3. This is very true. Its the Google browser now.

    I use Mozilla and most of the time I type the keyword in the address bar and press enter. This will either take me to the website that is ranked first by Google or take to the Google Search results. (I have Google Search as default search).

    Most of my friends do the same. This saves time and its easy. And I see nothing wrong in doing it.


  4. Hi Bhupendra,

    Sure, there is nothing “wrong” with it. It tells us a lot though how strong Google’s position is becoming as the de facto User Interface between us and the Web.

    What I wanted to point out is that, as a Web Analyst, I cannot consider the brand-related organic search, really **search** anymore. This will have important consequences on SEO, and how we analyze people’s behavior.

    Thanks for commenting and reading this blog!

  5. J’ai fais la même constatation sur le site bancaire sur lequel je travailles. Près de la moitié des recherches organique effectué inclus soit notre adresse ou directement le brand. Il est intéressant dans ces cas là de mettre un place un filtre pour indiquer qu’une recherche qui inclus seulement l’url du site comme étant du trafic direct.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.