Google has been (is?) the grand daddy of search for some time now. What people like about Google is not so much its breadth of pages – billions – but its relevance. This is the battle that Microsoft will have to conquer to defeat Google if at all. Throw in enough CPUs and just about anybody can do extensive web searches. The trick is the programming needed to ensure what you search for comes out of the billions of indexed pages.
Internet News writes Although size matters some, search experts agree it doesn’t matter a whole lot in this case.
“If I’m looking for the Oakland Raiders home page, it’s one page. I don’t need a million documents in the index to find it,” said Daniel Read, vice president of product management for Ask Jeeves (Quote, Chart).
“The vast majority of search engines throughout the Web have a great user interface, are fast and provide easy-to-use sites,” he continued. “Relevance is one of the biggest areas of differentiation.”
Chris Sherman, editor of SearchDay, another Jupitermedia site, said that an index needs enough mass to find results that actually are meaningful. The downside to that, however, is the larger the index, the more difficult it is for the engine to determine what will be the most relevant results.
Sherman said MSN needs to work harder on relevance. “The goal is to find the sweet spot between enough information and relevance,” he added.