I Suggest We Love Google Suggest

Some news events, such as Iraq’s invasion into Kuwait way back when, have me go “whoaaa!”, awaiting the big media or world response – but it takes a little while, making me doubt my initial reaction.

On the other hand, sometimes items drift through my river of news views that have me shrug my shoulder – and now the whole world is on it, again making me doubt my initial reaction.

Google Suggest is one of those non-events of the latter category, for me.

But for its historical value (“… and on that day Google…” yadah, yadah, yadah) it’s simply one of those things that make me go “hmmmm?”

Been There, Done That

First of all, we’ve been here already, haven’t we?

No, I’m not talking about the Labs edition of Google Suggest; I’m talking about Google Toolbar generating suggestions as you type since 4 beta. That’s since early 2006

Now maybe my whole incoming news system wasn’t setup that well back then (going back 2 ½ years is to the web what the dark ages are to history) but I don’t remember this whole “the world is changing!” reaction.

Or maybe the echo chamber was smaller; this is pre-Facebook open for anyone, pre-Twitter, pre-Sphinn (back in the days when we still walked to work, barefoot, through the snow, even in summer…)

Keyword Research Forced on Searchers

The funny thing is that what seems to hurt is that Google Suggest funnels searchers into 1 of 10 suggestion routes.


We’re all doing keyword research and many of us are or were paying good money to access data on what people actually search for because that is where we want to be too. But whoever provides the number through whatever means, they can’t guarantee people will use and re-use the keywords you went with.

That’s because language is such a big sea of words and phrases and expressions while people’s desire to limit it to actual search queries is non-existent. Instead of typing “toilet cleaning” or “toilet +cleaning” they type things like “how do I clean my toilet”

But now! Oh now we have Google Suggest nicely funneling these people to and through 10 different suggestions. If you’re optimizing for “real estate new york”, start typing and see what your clients will see .. and what many of them will use.

Predictive keyword use – who would have thought?!

There’re Only 10 Positions

Was it Ammon Johns who said that no matter how many results there are, you’re basically always just competing against 10 sites: the ones on the first SERP.

Anything that somehow interferes with that, adds to it, morphs it, is great, I think. It adds an invisible 11th position, so to say.

OneBox results? Great! More chance.

“Did you mean…?” – wonderful, keep it coming!

“Searches related to: …” – woohoo!

Google search suggestions? You know my idea by now, don’t you…

10 suggestions. 10 SERPs to rank in. 10 times the exposure. And they’re not even charging for it!

Sliced bread, I tell you; pure sliced bread.

Images courtesy of Esthr and stefan2904

Posted in SEO

About the Author: Ruud Hein

My paid passion at Search Engine People sees me applying my passions and knowledge to a wide array of problems, ones I usually experience as challenges. People who know me know I love coffee.

Ruud Hein

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