Sponsored Links Can Be Useful
Rash: So as a result, if it says this is a sponsored link and it says this isn't, then that's probably a search engine you know you can trust because they're actually revealing which links are the sponsored ones.
Lewis: Yes, correct. And again, I would love to say everybody, but I think most people are doing that. They have to pay the bills, so people have to realize that it does require some type of sponsorship. But here's the benefit, and where people maybe on Google ignore a lot of the paid search: when you deal with a vertical that's specialized in a certain area you should look at those sponsor results because a lot of them are based on the keywords or topics that you have. So you may find them just as valuable as some of the natural search results.
Rash: So what's the best thing that a business can get out of looking for a vertical search engine?
Lewis: What they get is something that's more aligned with the interest that they have. So if they're looking for enterprise servers, for example, they would want to find a vertical search engine that deals with that-and to be clear, it's a search engine, so it's not going to provide or generate all of the content.
But it does bring all of the content into a single source or a single portal, where then I don't have to do a bunch of searches and scroll through 15, 20, 30 pages to find what I need. Someone else has done the legwork for me. Because as a business user, the most valuable thing that we have is time, and we want to make sure that we're not wasting time looking through things that don't matter, aren't related to what we're looking for, or telling our computer a lot of keyword searches and continuing to structure the keywords to tell the computer what we want.