July 17, 2007 |
Google has the wrong name. Rather than naming themselves after a number with 100 zeroes, they should have named themselves Kudzu, after the insidious creeping vine that encompasses much of the southeast U.S. The latest area they are creeping into? Customized site search for small business.
Google announced Custom Search Business Edition today, touting the expansion of the Custom Search Engine introduced last fall with XML support, easily customized look-and-feel to match a company's web site, and the ability to turn off ads in the search results. And for the gift of inviting Google into your company's site in such an intimate manner, prices start at $100 a year for search of up to 5000 pages, head to $500 per year for 50,000 pages, and go on from there.
It's definitely a low-cost solution compared to building your own site search in house, but at what cost? I'm still seeing people talking about moving away from Microsoft's invasion, and AT&T invading your space with their iPhone piracy search, and yet Google is creeping ever forward in getting themselves insinuated in every minute corner of the web that they can. Aside from my MSN IM account that I use maybe once every three months with the one friend who is on it, I'm completely Microsoft-free. I can't say the same about Google, and I don't think it's possible to extricate myself from their services. Even if I weren't using them myself, nearly every site I visit is using AdSense or some version of site search or has a Gmail address. And that's starting to scare me just a little.