A few days ago Google added a personalized search feature called SearchWiki. This feature allows you to bump search engine results for a term you searched for up or down, or even remove them completely from the results page. You can also comment on a particular search result and view other people’s comments. Though this feature is really cool, I wonder how will it affect CTR (Click through rates) and SEO/SEM efforts.
SearchWiki reminds me of StumbleUpon in the sense that it allows the user to see comments about a site and decide after they have heard other opinions if it’s a site worth using. It’s putting the results back in the hands of the end user, not a company paying thousands per month for back links or SEM. I feel this will alter CTR rates and deemphasize SEO & SEM to a degree. In six months to a year when people have become accustomed to using Google’s SearchWiki and more people comment on websites in the Google SERPS, less will be focused on the position of the site in the SERPS and more on what real people are saying about the site. Google will have more of the value that made Digg, Delicious and StumbleUpon popular. This will force companies to be even more competitive in providing the best service or product possible, or else an unsatisfied customer could slander them on the SERPS. SEO will still be important, because a person will still have to find what their looking for, however once they find your website it may be tougher to get them to click, or easier depending on what’s being said about you.
You can visit Google’s blog to find more about Google’s SearchWiki and personalized Search or watch the video below.
Even though these features are only available to you when your logged into your google account, do you think Google’s SearchWiki will have any affect on click through rates and SEO/SEM?
What are your thoughts on these features Google has added?