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Google, as we know it, will change

Google is an advertising company. Search is its vehicle for showing adverts on its Google.com platform and YouTube.

But there is one problem. More and more advertisers are leaving Google Ads. As of Q4 2023, Google’s earnings have grown 3.35% yearly. Ad revenue is up 11% yearly, but the increase is from YouTube Ads. Advertisers are no longer flocking to Google!

So what?

Google, Facebook, and Twitter, for example, rely on data to sell advertising effectively. They love to track and create personas.

This is nothing new. However, what is new is that Facebook’s data, for example, is seen as more accurate than Google’s. It is true. That does not matter; what matters is that advertisers perceive that the data is more reliable.

Does this mean that advertisers pull their Google Ads? No, not all; it just means they will pay less per click. There is also another problem. Traffic.

Again, the perception is that Google is just a means of getting from a digital A to B. In contrast, social media platforms are seen as destinations. People live on Facebook, Twitter and Instagram. No one lives on Google!

So what can Google do?

To gain credibility, Google must do exactly what the other platforms do: insist on logging in. Twitter, LinkedIn, and Facebook heavily restrict access to information, forcing you to log into your account with prompts—no membership, bye-bye. To sell advertising, they need to know where you are located.

Sundar Pichai

As Google is not “social media”, it has not seen any reason to do this. Google Accounts have been around for 15 years, but they are not a prerequisite to using Google to search.

The massive change we will see is that Google will start prompting you to log into your account. This has already started in  2023-24. Where the change will be is that just like the other platforms, Google will give you a small amount of time to search, and then BAM will force you to log in.

Once you log in, like all other ‘membership’ platforms, you are no longer an anonymous web surfer. You are a person. The beauty of people is that they are consumers; they buy stuff. If Google can turn to advertisers and say look, the quality of my customer data has just gone through the roof. I can tell you the names of my users, where they live, age, income and when they browse, then advertisers will sit up and listen. That data is worth way more.

Remember, the founders of Google are long gone. All of the original Googlers have cashed out. The CEO is Sundar Pichai. He is a businessman. Google has always had to keep increasing his salary to keep him. He is money-orientated and, like all other CEOs, has shareholders to keep happy.    Sundar is into technology; he helped create Chrome and launch Andriod. In fact, he did lots of amazing things at Google, but none related to Search. I doubt he believes in the sanctity of search or that Google should always “do no evil”.Prabhakar Raghavan Google Vice President

Prabhakar Raghavan is the Vice President of Google and, surprisingly, the head of Search and Ads. Before he came to Google, he worked at Yahoo! as the Search manager, and we know how that ended. Enough said.

What do Google’s changes mean to me?

If you are forced to log in, then a platform can tailor content to what it believes you want to see. You can easily see how Facebook and YouTube give you more of what you watch. All of them are spying on you, seeing where your attention is. Instagram is timing you on each post: which ones you click on, which ones you watch, and which ones you skip.

However, once Google jumps on board, more problems await.

If this is true and Google starts feeding us search results (and ads) that we think we want to see, then the whole purpose of using Google as a discovery tool to discover new and amazing things becomes redundant.

Who hasn’t reset their YouTube app to get fresh content or created a new Amazon Prime account because the suggested films are all the same? This is what will happen to Google. We will be forced into creating new Google accounts to be free to find new information, not the junk that Google wants us to see.

The END result

Another means of searching the internet will become high technology, and Prabhakar’s Google Search will go the way of Yahoo Search.

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