Vertical Search

Regular readers of this blog have been getting subjected to a lot of Tom Evslin links the past couple weeks.  That’s because I have been really impressed with the stuff that Tom is putting up on his blog.

And until now, I have agreed with everything he’s said.

But I disagree with some of his post on vertical search engines in which he essentially says that phrase is an oxymoron.

I agree that its easier to go to Google or Yahoo! or even Microsoft for most of the basis searches I do.  But that’s not true of every search I do.

When I want to do a travel search, I go to Kayak instead of Google.

If I wanted to do a dating search, I’d go to Lycos’ new dating search service instead of Google.

If I was looking for a job, I’d go to Indeed instead of Google.

Why would I use these services?  Because the results are orders of magitude better than what Google produces for the same search term.

Some would say that Google can and will produce these "vertical search services" and I suppose that’s true. 

But then Google will be providing a number of vertical search services in addition to a broad horizontal one.  Maybe that’s their plan.

Regardless of what Google intends to do, I think we are in for verticalization in the search space and I disagree with Tom on this one.