Ex-Googler Marissa Mayer in a podcast on the topic of why Google search is so bad explained that it wasn’t Google that was bad it was the Internet. Then she believed that one of the reasons for keeping users on Google is since the web isn’t constantly a great experience.
Ex-Googler Marissa Mayer
Marissa Mayer was employee # 20 at Google. She played essential functions in practically all of Google’s significant items, including Google search, local, images, and AdWords, among others.
She left Google to end up being president and CEO of Yahoo! for 5 years.
Mayer was not only there at the start of Google but contributed in forming the company, which offers her an unique perspective on the business and its thinking, to some degree.
What is the Reason for Zero-Click SERPs?
Marissa Mayer appeared on a current Freakonomics podcast that was on the subject of, Is Google Becoming Worse?
In one part of the podcast she insisted that Google search is only a mirror and does not create the poor quality of the search results page.
She asserted that if the search engine result are worse that’s only because the Internet is worse.
The podcast then proceeds to talk about highlighted bits, what some in the search marketing neighborhood call zero-click search engine result.
They’re called zero-click since Google shows the information a user requires on the search engine result page so that the users receive their answer without needing to click through to a site.
Google formally states that these search features are developed to be helpful.
Marissa Mayer believed that another inspiration to keep individuals from clicking to a site is since the quality of the Internet is so bad.
The podcast host began the discussion with his analysis of what featured bits are:
“One way Google has tried to eliminate the general decline in quality is by supplementing its index of a trillion web pages with some content of its own.
If you ask an easy question about cooking or the age of some politician or star, or even what’s the very best podcast, you might see what Mayer calls an ‘inline result,’ or what Google calls a ‘highlighted bit.’
It’s a bit of text that answers your question right there on the search-results page, without any requirement to click on a link.”
Mayer offered her opinion that Google might be “reluctant” to refer users to sites.
“I believe that Google is more hesitant to send out users out into the web.
And to me, you know, that indicate a natural stress where they’re stating,
‘Wait, we see that the web often isn’t a fantastic experience for our searchers to continue onto. We’re keeping them on our page.’
Individuals may perceive that and state,
‘Well, they’re keeping them on the page since that helps them make more money, provides more control.’
But my sense is that recent uptick in the number of inline results is due to the fact that they are concerned about a few of the low-grade experiences out online.
I believe that the issue is really hard.
You may not like the way that Google’s fixing it at the minute, but provided how the web is altering and progressing, I’m unsure that the old approach, if reapplied, would do as well as you ‘d like it to.”
What Is the Motivation Behind Featured Bits?
The factor Google provides for providing highlighted bits in the search engine result is that they are practical for users.
Google’s assistance files explain:
“We display featured bits when our systems identify this format will assist people more easily discover what they’re seeking, both from the description about the page and when they click on the link to check out the page itself. They’re specifically practical for those on mobile or searching by voice.”
Marissa Mayer’s viewpoint matters because she played a crucial role in shaping Google, from Search to AdWords to Gmail.
Obviously she’s just providing her viewpoint and not mentioning a truth that Google is reluctant to send out traffic to sites because the quality of the Internet is bad.
But could there be something to her observation that Google is just a mirror and that websites today are not excellent?
Consider that in 2022, there were 8 formally acknowledged Google updates.
Of those 8 updates, 6 of them updates were spam updates, useful material updates and item evaluation updates.
The majority of Google’s updates in 2022 were designed to remove poor quality internet content from the search engine result.
That focus on removing poor quality websites aligns with Marissa Mayer’s view that the Internet today is full of low quality material.
The history of Google’s algorithm updates in 2022 conforms to Marissa Mayer’s observation that web material is bad and that it affects the quality of search results page.
She said that she gets a sense that Google may be “concerned about a few of the low-quality experiences out online,” and that’s one of the reasons that it may be “reluctant” to send out traffic to websites.
Could Marissa Mayer be stating aloud what Googlers might not say in public?
Listen to the Freakonomics podcast here
Is Google Becoming Worse?
Included image by Best SMM Panel/Koldunov