Following on from my earlier post speculating that there are way more site searches than web searches. Why is it that we hear so much less about site search? Both site search and web search are important for a site owner – web search helps drive people to the site, while site search helps people find what they want on a site. With more people using site search than web search, it is arguably more important.
I think the reason site search gets less coverage in the press is because there are no big players to focus on. Web search is dominated by Google, Yahoo, MSN, and Ask. The average user knows these brands and feels an impact if they change the way their search works. What’s more the investment community follows these companies closely because they account for the majority of revenue associated with web search.
On the other hand the responsibility of site search is spread across all web sites. There are a handful of vendors, such as SLI who are responsible for the search on an increasing number of sites. But there is no-one that has the dominance that Google has with web search. Over the next few years there will probably be a site search vendor who will serve more queries than Google. It will be interesting to see if they get anywhere near the attention.