While Google is the number one global leader in search engines, ironically, new findings show that the keywords 'Google Buzz' are being searched less and less with each passing day - while the search results for the word "Twitter" remains constant. Since Google Buzz was supposed to be Google's answer to social networking and based on its sizable Gmail user base, does this research portend an ominous future, or will Google Buzz Superstar find a means to 'resurrect' itself?
On February 9, when the day Big G launched its "GB" product, the search engines lit up like holiday lights on Christmas morning. Chitika Research, an intent-based advertising network that specializes in search engine insights calculated that 1,500 searches for "Google Buzz" appeared. This number exceeded Twitter 15 to one.
However, according to Chitika those searches dropped off quickly - "on February 10th, there were 580 searches; on the 11th, 147 and on the 12th - only three days removed from Buzz's much-hyped launch- searches for 'Google Buzz' failed to break three digits" eliciting less than 10 searches per day. During the same time period, searches for Twitter remained fairly stable averaging about 87 searches per day.
Based on search queries most often being used as a measurement of the general Internet community’s interest and awareness of a product or service, these results are somewhat surprising. Using Google’s own keyword search volume tool shows a similar spike-and-decline, although the spike doesn’t appear to be as marked as within the Chitika network findings.
Google has been known to introduce products and lose interest over time. Accquiring "Dodgeball" in 2005, they were quick to discontinue it and replace its with Google Lattitude, a less robust location-based service network. Perhaps in retrospect, if they followed the Dodgeball road map, this may have prohibited Dennis Crowley and Naveen Selvadurai from gaining such a foothold in the location-based sevice network market with Foursquare (note: interesting to note that Crowley and Selvadurai were the founders of Dodgeball as well).
Will Google Buzz follow suit? According to Chitika, "Google Buzz seems to have failed to capture the interest of social media users – whether due to its well-publicized privacy issues or the fact that it’s attempting to cram into an already oversaturated social media universe. The next step will show whether Google is serious about Buzz or not. It will be interesting to see if they continue to push Buzz as the next big social network, or if they let it founder, denied the attention and engineering it needs to survive, like Google Wave before it."
Or will it resurrect themselves? Having been sidetracked with censorship battles on the global stage with China, while trying to gain market share in the smartphone market with their Android device, it's not surprising they've been a little distracted. Perhaps when the digital dust clears, they will be able figure out where they went wrong with "GB" - aside from the initial privacy issues at launch - and move the network to another level. If not, I don't think Brin nor Page are going to lose any sleep over whether or not they lost the "Buzz" battles to a microblogging platform that had a four-year head-start on them. And with tweets like this, maybe they are just carrying a lot of dead-weight by continuing with a less buzz-worthy product!