We’ve seen a lot of search engine innovations in 2010 and we at Brandsplat try to keep on these sorts of things. Last month we applauded the arrival o fsocial searches and we adjusted to the potential seizure causing side effects of Google Instant. After all, we’re as search engine dependent as the rest of the planet. We believe behind every brilliant piece of copy lies a jillion Google searches. So when the Internet started chattering about how a new search engine which promised to eliminate spam from our results, we had to see what the fuss was about.
Blekko like other search engines has an impossibly goofy name, a language of its own, and high hopes of taking a chunk out of the Google Empire. Yet Blekko has garnered mass amounts of PR because of its aspirations to play the search engine game differently. For one thing, Blekko doesn’t rely on algorithms to compile search results but employs tagged pages by users which the search engine then indexes. Blekko has 3 billion web pages indexed which are small potatoes compared to Google’s trillion web pages. Blekko users create slashtags for pages based on things like keywords, categories, or people. Next, Blekko organizes those pages and indexes them. The goal of slashtags is to give users the sites they want without any of the spam. But does the darn thing actually work, you ask?
We took it for a spin and found it to be mildly successful. When searching for Brandsplat, Blekko came up with our homepage as well as links to our video reports. The organization of the results is concise and easy to read without a bunch of irrelevant ads for Acai Berry Diets. Layout-wise, the Blekko aesthetic is a tad clinical and drab, but that is certain to change when more money comes rolling in. Mentions of Brandsplat on other sites were tougher to find and Blekko thus far doesn’t gather any social media mentions. Is it the super-fast mind reading machine of Google? No. But it also isn’t the ad-laden hot mess that is Bing either. What is fascinating about Blekko is the social aspect. Having user created slashtags means small businesses can control where searchers find them. Also, friends can direct one another on the site to searches and tags which they find mutually interesting. Blekko is starting a conversation among Internet users empowering them to design searches without pesky spam. Aside from glitchy budget related issues, Blekko should easily be integrated in our online marketing toolbox.
What say you, readers? Is Blekko a flash-in-the-pan or will it change the way we search forever?