Have you noticed recently how everything that Google ever does, however minute it may be, seems to be coming out in the press. Today – Google indicated that they’re making some revisions to their homepage as they’re adding a “video” link on the top. Now is that really necessary to hear about every small thing that Google does?
I understand that when Google has a large product or enters into a new business, it’s definitely worthy of some press. Their overall stature in the market and ability to shake up a market sector creates a stir in any company. Google Checkout, their new payment platform for buyers created a large wave among PayPal, as PayPal was the reigning e-commerce platform champions for the past 4-5 years. Issues like that are worthy of news – a simple integration change on their website is not.
Google Local for instance came out with saved address location last week which was also worthy of the press – something that Microsoft, Yahoo and most other maps had done a year ago. I understand that Google is a large player but every change they make is not going to shake up an industry.
Which brings me to my next point sparked by a fantastic article I read in business week regarding Google products. I love google and I love the way they have simplified the web – but their products do not gain as much traction as expected. The reason I liked this article was not because it was simply putting down Google, but because it actually took an accurate snapshot of what is going on in the market right now. It’s very simple to praise the companies that are doing very well – but to find fault in them is a much different ball game. Let’s look at some of their product which got an extremely large welcoming…but not too large following:
- Google Spreadsheets – deemed to be the “excel killer” has yet to really get any traction – reasoning? I think when you’re using a spreadsheet you’re looking to make complicated calculations…the simplicity model just doesn’t work.
- Google Writely – This is the word processor unit which came out recently – I think this has some functionality if integrated with blogger – a straight to webpage posting through the browser – without that however, it could be a nice way to alleviate the concerns of using word-pad.
- Google Checkout – considered the PayPal Killer – this app has gotten some heads to turn because of its rebate offers – it has ways to go and the initial feedback is showing that there are many delays with the user experience. Announced today however, you can get a free t shirt if you make a $20 purchase or more using it
- Google Video – YouTube seems to have taken this market – when it first came out, it really was big with the top 100 videos.
- Google Talk – Stats recently came out that only 44,000 users use Gtalk on a consistent basis – MSN has almost 10 times that number
I guess what I’m getting at is when you step back and look at the Google products, they really haven’t done as well as the reception that they get. How will this affect their bottom line? Well we’ll have to see soon.
Just my $.02