Eric Siu • Jun 18, 2007

Covering All Elements of Google's Universal Search

The landscape of search engine promotion has been changing dramatically. Earlier this year, one of the most dramatic changes in recent history took place when Google launched their “Universal Search” product.

Universal Search has essentially replaced the standard Google search results that we have all grown familiar with. In the new platform, you will often come across the following products in a Universal Search results page:

  • Google Base
  • Google Videos / YouTube
  • Google Local
  • Google Products (Formerly Froogle)

Of course, there are many more Google Products. Some searches, provided that they're contextually relevant, will include any of the following Google Products:

  • Blog Search
  • Book Search
  • Catalogs
  • Code Search
  • Directory
  • Images
  • Local/Maps
  • News
  • Product Search
  • Video

As a web site owner though, you need to make sure that your products, web pages, services and businesses are ALL listed throughout Google's service arena. To do that, seek the assistance of the following reviews, summaries and links for each included product…

Google Blog Search

Submitting your blog to Google actually requires the use of the Google Blog Search Pinging Service. Review Google's information on the pinging service to learn how to automate blog post submissions and general inclusion of your blog to this search product.

Google Book Search

Do you have a book or publication to sell on the Internet? If so, you need to tell Google all about it! You can do that here using an active Google account.

Google Catalogs

If you are a merchant with a catalog in print, Google Catalogs can help you make your catalog accessible to online users by scanning it and hosting it online and promoted through Google Search. With your catalog being included, users can quickly find your products and order directly from you. To submit your catalog to Google, you will need to sign up for a Google Catalogs account and add a unique Google address to your circulation.

Google Code Search

Developers have a great opportunity to share their software developments with the audience using Google's Code Search. Developers can easily add their applications and code snippets for inclusion to Google Code Search by using a GData or XML feed.

Google Directory

For those who have been in the industry a while, the Google Directory is really a co branded version of the Netscape Open Directory Project, or DMOZ. Inclusion to his human edited directory can be frustrating — but the benefits of an active listing are monumental for a healthy search promotion effort. To learn more about how to include your web site in the Google Directory, please review the instructions available online.

Google Images

Assuming that Google is crawling your web site actively, you probably already included in Google Image search results. There are of course advantages and disadvantages with having your images being listed here. By default, it is safe to assume your images are included. If you'd like to remove your images, or prevent that from happening though — you should certainly rely on Google's resources.

Google Local / Google Maps

Google Local and Google Maps is one of the most anticipated Google Search products prominently featured in the new Universal Search. Listing your business is simple using the easy interface and process made available by Google.

Google News

If you run a web site that features timely and factual news articles and resources, you may be able to get your content featured in Google News. Much to the liking of news publishers, Google News is featured prominently on the Universal Search system. TO have your content evaluated for inclusion on Google's News listings, please read more about recommending sites for inclusion in Google News.

Google Product Search / Froogle

Google Product Search is the new name for what has been in place for the past three years as Froogle. This is Google's online product search center, and it allows merchants to list their entire inventory of items directly on Google for sale. Users can then search normally on the new Universal Search and be presented with options to purchase products directly online. To include your items, see more directly from the source at “Sell with Google“.

Google Video

Google has recently invested heavily in the use of video search products. With the acquisition of YouTube, users and marketers can only wonder just how far video will become involved in Google Search products. Right now though, Google Videos are inserted and peppered throughout Google Universal Search results — and certainly present an entertaining opportunity for sites to market their content. To get started in harnessing the power of Google Video Search, seek the assistance of Google Video (Beta) – Video Upload Program. (https://upload.video.google.com/)

Conclusion & Advice

We have only seen the start of Google Universal Search. As the service grows and users share their experiences and frustrations, the Universal Search products are certainly subject to change. Using the Universal Search platform now though will allow site owners to truly push their potential to an entirely different level. More than anything else, taking advantage of these services now, while they're not extremely competitive — should lead to some great long term results.

As you submit your web sites, pages, products and goods to Google, it is our recommendation that you use a consistent Google account. Doing so will help to establish more authority with Google and in the back end, allow Google to derive some clear patterns on the comprehensive business you run. That, in the end — is what will lead to your success in using Universal Search.

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