The death of Google

Hmmmm…. I sound crazy in the current context but here are few things which can potentialy kill Google.

1. Click Fraud – a company which lives by clicks dies by clicks(fraud ones). Click fraud has been an area of concern for lot of advertisers and they are bound to strike back. Initialy when people moved from traditional advertising models to internet advertising, they loved the measurability, simplicity and speed. But now the advertisers want to see real returns. They will not give Google their money just because they do not have better options. How about advertising in a revenue sharing mode(CPGC – Cost Per Good Click)?

2. End of search – Will search always be a big issue? Do you think that your TV remote is something for which you will pay a bagfull of money. The time is not far away when file search and net search will not be too different. I am sure Microsoft is already working on this. Browsers became non important part of the internet economy as features became competetive. Same is going to happen with search. Another issue with search is that it is totally non sticky application and migration for user is so easy that the companies will not even realize and exodus will happen.

3. Will people continue to do things on internet using a computer? I don’t think so. The computer is bound to make people’s life dull and boring to an extent that they would like to go back to humans in few years. Currently companies take pride in telling customers that you can access them via computers. Twenty years down the line, you might see ads which wil boast of the human touch. Computer will become a back end device.

4. What about Yahoo, Amazon and Microsoft – Don’t write them off. Each one of them is capable of striking back with vengance. Yahoo has been involved in establishing a relationship with users ensuring they touch all parts of their life. Amazon has been banking on web services and SOA models to drive growth and has also into A9. Microsoft has an old history of beating the shit out of other companies and they always miss the first bus by design but catch the second bus and drive it with such a speed that the first bus along with it’s passengers gets crushed.

5. Business via innovation – Google as per insiders information is more of a programmer’s paradise with innovations coming from these programmers. Is this a model which will continue to work as software industry becomes more mature. Innovation is important for companies to differentiate their service offerings but overdose of innovation without business perspective can also blow you up. Google with it’s background of coding before counting dollars may not be able to sustain.


  1. umang

    Click fraud isn’t a real problem. It is inherent to the current CPC model and that’s as far as it goes. Although there has been a lot of hullabaloo around it, online advertising is still a win-game for advertisers, publishers and ad networks so there isn’t a need to take drastic steps there. I think a lot more fraud (and more sophisticated ways) would be needed for this situation to change but for this there must be a significant amount of gain for the fraudsters to this. And then the ad revenue model can be changed and the blackhats will be stranded. It is a problem that all advertisers, publishers and ad networks will be interested to solve and Google will have all their support. I would compare click fraud to DoS attacks – it is not enough of a deterrent, nor is there enough of a (economic) driving force.

    Search contributes largely to the meaning of having your identity on the internet. Everything revolves around it – advertising, the way people write their html, heck, the entire tagging phenomenon has search written all over it. However, I do agree that search as we know it may not exist in the future. And this takes me to your point 4. Even startups shouldn’t be underestimated. The search problem has been eluding us for so long that I think the solution is extremely extremely simple – so simple that it is difficult for our complicated thought processes to see it. It reminds me of web-based email (remember what hotmail did when it launched?) – the need to be searchable today is like how the need to quickly and cheaply was ten years ago.

    I agree with you that Google may be a little to headstrong in “coding before counting dollars”. Free and footloose when the economy is growing and advertising is scaling unprecedented levels may work but in the long term I agree that it many not be sustainable by the industry.

    But when a giant falls, the land breaks for miles around. It may be in the best interest of the economy for Google to do well.

  2. bkbirla

    Google has not done anything to me, but I am sure that Google in it’s current form of Adsense company is not something which will last long time(5 years). It is certainly possible that they will be able to transform thmselves and live and prosper much longer.

  3. bkbirla

    Let me put it this way, click fraud is not a big problem as the hype would love us to believe but I still don’t think that it will continue to be the dominant model. I believe there will be two aspects which are next logical steps for online advertising world.
    1. The price of a click will not be just a function of keyword but also based on who is clicking. So the advertiser will pay a different price for a click from Nigeria and Japan.
    2.Click will no longer be a measure enough for generating a lead. Technology will develop to provide better measurability and payout will be based on who clicks and what he does after the click.

    I still feel CPC will live but in a very different form compared to what it is now.

    I certainly do see the value of search but it is not as path breaking as electricity or sliced bread. Such industries will have a transient hype stage and will settle down either to a more tested business model or die.

    I certainly wish Google well and hope that they will be able to adapt themselves to the changing times and reduce the “coding before counting $” culture.

  4. bkbirla

    Hmmmmm…. Looks like I am not the only one.

    I do agree with him that Microsoft is a big threat just because they know how to build a business better than anybody else. One of my friends in Microsoft had a simple argument that MS will win, just because they know how to do it and have done it so many times. First mover advantage is not a long term advantage for non sticky applications and ability to adapt, innovate and execute in dynamic business scenarios becomes a key differentiators.

  5. anonymous

    Online advertising has been ignoring the click fraud problem just because they think that it is anyway is better than cost per impression model. But I am sure advertisers will become more demanding as we move on.

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