When will Google crash come?

Dave Winer says we’ll know Web 2.0′s bubble is popped when Google’s stock crashes.

So, what’s the chances of that happening? Well, here in Wales, I see hundreds of businesses, nearly none of them are on Google. Despite the fact that the local population says they use Google.

Translation: Google’s growth isn’t close to being done yet. Particularly internationally.

Will Barons prove right? I don’t know. I still remember all the pundits saying “Apple is dead.” Or, talk to Robert Hess. When he started working at Microsoft about 18 years ago his coworkers told him to sell Microsoft, thinking there was no possible way for the stock to go up more than it already had (remember, back in the 1980s Microsoft was in the same place that Google is today).

I see nothing that’ll stop Google. Do you?

Or, if you do think Google is overrated, what do you think will pop its bubble?

Some things we’ll watch for: growth slowing. That’ll tell us that Google doesn’t have what it takes to get all these businesses on board.

Comments

  1. Google is near dead, because you the big fan of Google don’t look at Ads section anymore, as you confessed in previous Google cluster article. J/k.

    Google growth depend on both advertisers and searchers, I think your point about advertisers is valid. But how about searchers? Will people will do more search? With each search, how many time they will click ads on the left? Will Google find new income stream? I don’t know, I think we have to wait to see.

  2. Google is near dead, because you the big fan of Google don’t look at Ads section anymore, as you confessed in previous Google cluster article. J/k.

    Google growth depend on both advertisers and searchers, I think your point about advertisers is valid. But how about searchers? Will people will do more search? With each search, how many time they will click ads on the left? Will Google find new income stream? I don’t know, I think we have to wait to see.

  3. Google’s business model doesnt look sustainable. I mean, look at the TV channels – most of them started as free channels supported by advertising. This changed to ‘paid content’. Now we are talking about how the web is going to kill the TV channels altogether. what do you think?

  4. I didn’t say I always don’t look at the ads. When I’m searching for something I look over at the ads. But when I’m looking at blogs, I generally don’t.

    That said, someone’s clicking on those ads. My friends are making thousands of dollars per month from them.

    One friend, though, told me he started making a lot more when he put his Google ads into the content area instead of over on the right side.

    That’s what makes your theory wrong.

  5. Google’s business model doesnt look sustainable. I mean, look at the TV channels – most of them started as free channels supported by advertising. This changed to ‘paid content’. Now we are talking about how the web is going to kill the TV channels altogether. what do you think?

  6. I didn’t say I always don’t look at the ads. When I’m searching for something I look over at the ads. But when I’m looking at blogs, I generally don’t.

    That said, someone’s clicking on those ads. My friends are making thousands of dollars per month from them.

    One friend, though, told me he started making a lot more when he put his Google ads into the content area instead of over on the right side.

    That’s what makes your theory wrong.

  7. Seshadri: I don’t get what you’re trying to say. What TV channels are you talking about?

    Google’s business model has a lot of life left in it. Google is the Yellow Pages of the Web now. All those small businesses will eventually get on Google. Why? Because that’s where the business is (or will be).

  8. Seshadri: I don’t get what you’re trying to say. What TV channels are you talking about?

    Google’s business model has a lot of life left in it. Google is the Yellow Pages of the Web now. All those small businesses will eventually get on Google. Why? Because that’s where the business is (or will be).

  9. The only thing that I am skeptic about, as far as Google goes, is that most of its revenue come from one stream – advertising. OTOH, Microsoft, Yahoo, etc have a rather diverse stream of revenue. To me, this means that Google must be perceived as a higher risk than some other competitors, unless they “diversify their portfolio”.

  10. The only thing that I am skeptic about, as far as Google goes, is that most of its revenue come from one stream – advertising. OTOH, Microsoft, Yahoo, etc have a rather diverse stream of revenue. To me, this means that Google must be perceived as a higher risk than some other competitors, unless they “diversify their portfolio”.

  11. @5. I think now Google have 2 streams: AdWords as Yellow page, AdSense as content targeting. This is 2 streams within advertising space and there are so much space and budget to innovate. I think there is no near future threat now.

    @3. As I said, it was just j/k. But I still think that my point have some truth in it.

  12. @5. I think now Google have 2 streams: AdWords as Yellow page, AdSense as content targeting. This is 2 streams within advertising space and there are so much space and budget to innovate. I think there is no near future threat now.

    @3. As I said, it was just j/k. But I still think that my point have some truth in it.

  13. The Google stock price is a fad. If it can carry its current unrealistic price on through another recession then it will last by sucking off its own market cap. Its biggest problem is that it has no tangible product and its business model relies on three distinct markets all working together and continuing on the same path forever. That will never happen so they’d better do something quick while they still have the money.

    Like MS or not, they make products. Good or bad, it doesn’t matter since they have sales. It may be a challenge for them to fight OSS in the future, but it’s more of a certain future than Google has at this point.

  14. The Google stock price is a fad. If it can carry its current unrealistic price on through another recession then it will last by sucking off its own market cap. Its biggest problem is that it has no tangible product and its business model relies on three distinct markets all working together and continuing on the same path forever. That will never happen so they’d better do something quick while they still have the money.

    Like MS or not, they make products. Good or bad, it doesn’t matter since they have sales. It may be a challenge for them to fight OSS in the future, but it’s more of a certain future than Google has at this point.

  15. Google’s business is such that the actual user’s wont have to pay for the service – some third party(read advertisers) pays. Hasn’t this model already failed in the TV space?

  16. Google’s business is such that the actual user’s wont have to pay for the service – some third party(read advertisers) pays. Hasn’t this model already failed in the TV space?

  17. Unrealistic price? I hope you mean price per share because GOOG P/E is 61 today and a quick glance shows there has been a tremendous amount of buying over the last few years of such junk as AMZN at P/E of 59 (a low) and RHAT at a P/E of 45 (a low).

    I hope they don’t split the stock, and I think a P/E more like YHOO at 34.22 is in the not-so-distant future. I think they need to stop making so many wierd “products” though–and charge for things like Picaso

    Now, having said that, I’ll also point out that the best technology usually doesn’t win.

  18. Unrealistic price? I hope you mean price per share because GOOG P/E is 61 today and a quick glance shows there has been a tremendous amount of buying over the last few years of such junk as AMZN at P/E of 59 (a low) and RHAT at a P/E of 45 (a low).

    I hope they don’t split the stock, and I think a P/E more like YHOO at 34.22 is in the not-so-distant future. I think they need to stop making so many wierd “products” though–and charge for things like Picaso

    Now, having said that, I’ll also point out that the best technology usually doesn’t win.

  19. When searching on Google I often use the paid ads at the top or on the side of the search. So in my case as a Google user their model is working as designed. Also one of my clients uses Google ads and the majority of her business comes from Google. She stopped using Google for a month or two and her sales dropped significantly. I see Google’s stock going to $1000!

  20. When searching on Google I often use the paid ads at the top or on the side of the search. So in my case as a Google user their model is working as designed. Also one of my clients uses Google ads and the majority of her business comes from Google. She stopped using Google for a month or two and her sales dropped significantly. I see Google’s stock going to $1000!

  21. Hi Mihir,

    You’re right, that Google has one primary revenue stream, but I don’t think this is as bad as a lot of people think. Many (most) large media conglomerates only have a single source of revenue – coincidentally, it’s the same source as google – ads.

    The reason why this has worked for the media is that they have very large market penetration (i.e. a lot of eyes see the ads, even if only a few do anything about them) and they have a diversified presentation format (i.e. multiple Newspapers, multiple magazines, radio shows, TV stations, etc.).

    Google is in a similar position. A lot of people see their ads, and they see them in more than one place. I see ads when I search for content on the web, sure, but also when I check my email, read my friends blogs, search for source code for work, look for directions, etc.

    I think their biggest concern is not this source of revenue drying up – but other people adopting the same business model. Notably, MSFT or YHOO.

  22. Hi Mihir,

    You’re right, that Google has one primary revenue stream, but I don’t think this is as bad as a lot of people think. Many (most) large media conglomerates only have a single source of revenue – coincidentally, it’s the same source as google – ads.

    The reason why this has worked for the media is that they have very large market penetration (i.e. a lot of eyes see the ads, even if only a few do anything about them) and they have a diversified presentation format (i.e. multiple Newspapers, multiple magazines, radio shows, TV stations, etc.).

    Google is in a similar position. A lot of people see their ads, and they see them in more than one place. I see ads when I search for content on the web, sure, but also when I check my email, read my friends blogs, search for source code for work, look for directions, etc.

    I think their biggest concern is not this source of revenue drying up – but other people adopting the same business model. Notably, MSFT or YHOO.

  23. Dave,

    Good point – their presentation formats are certainly different.

    MSFT & YHOO are threats, simply because of their large budgets and marketing muscle. Time will tell whether the Live model works for MSFT or not.

  24. Dave,

    Good point – their presentation formats are certainly different.

    MSFT & YHOO are threats, simply because of their large budgets and marketing muscle. Time will tell whether the Live model works for MSFT or not.

  25. well robert, if you listened to their CFO before stating your “tech geek” opinion you’d know that they’ve said multiple times that (a) Google does not care about its shareholders (how hip! that’s so techie, a publicly traded company not caring about people who legally have a stake in the company) and that (b) Google now no longer has any real new growth opportunities. the word the CFO used was “organic”. this made wall street wake up out of its suckup-analyst induced daydream for a while and the stock plunged about $50 in like 15 minutes.

    http://blogcritics.org/archives/2006/02/28/171813.php

    finally, three words: click-fraud bot nets.

  26. well robert, if you listened to their CFO before stating your “tech geek” opinion you’d know that they’ve said multiple times that (a) Google does not care about its shareholders (how hip! that’s so techie, a publicly traded company not caring about people who legally have a stake in the company) and that (b) Google now no longer has any real new growth opportunities. the word the CFO used was “organic”. this made wall street wake up out of its suckup-analyst induced daydream for a while and the stock plunged about $50 in like 15 minutes.

    http://blogcritics.org/archives/2006/02/28/171813.php

    finally, three words: click-fraud bot nets.

  27. Anyone who says Google is on the way out is a worthless doomsayer. We’ve heard all this before. Google is an innovative company with a positive image. It is quite capable of branching out into other areas if need be. I think it’s far from .

  28. Anyone who says Google is on the way out is a worthless doomsayer. We’ve heard all this before. Google is an innovative company with a positive image. It is quite capable of branching out into other areas if need be. I think it’s far from .

  29. Robert,

    If Googles stock depreciates in value, say to $60 a share rather than $500, is that a crash? I don’t think so. It’s a depreciation.

    Once Microsoft’s stock was in the stratosphere, but it levelled off. It’s the old adage of everything that goes up must eventually come down. It applies to stock also.

    So, I think Google will level off. But crash? Not likely anytime soon, especially if they keep adding value.

  30. Robert,

    If Googles stock depreciates in value, say to $60 a share rather than $500, is that a crash? I don’t think so. It’s a depreciation.

    Once Microsoft’s stock was in the stratosphere, but it levelled off. It’s the old adage of everything that goes up must eventually come down. It applies to stock also.

    So, I think Google will level off. But crash? Not likely anytime soon, especially if they keep adding value.

  31. I am yet to see an ex-google employee starting his own company – or did I miss something :)
    When a few of those happens – a company will be at its peak.
    When a lot of those happens – that company is on its way down.

  32. I am yet to see an ex-google employee starting his own company – or did I miss something :)
    When a few of those happens – a company will be at its peak.
    When a lot of those happens – that company is on its way down.

  33. I think Google has a long way to go before it crashes. It keeps coming up w/ useful and cool tools for consumers to use.

  34. I think Google has a long way to go before it crashes. It keeps coming up w/ useful and cool tools for consumers to use.

  35. I think Google has a lot of growth ahead and is not anywhere near crashing. It continues to come up w/ cool tools for consumers to use.

  36. I think Google has a lot of growth ahead and is not anywhere near crashing. It continues to come up w/ cool tools for consumers to use.

  37. I remember thinking back in the day that no one would catch up with Alta Vista on search. Well people managed to screw that up. Google will not be easy to beat in search but I wonder if there is a next big thing out there, perhaps not yet thought of, that will suck up all the advertizing dollars that currently go to Google? Beating Google doesn’t have to mean better search – it just has to mean more eyes that are more willing to click on the ads.

  38. I remember thinking back in the day that no one would catch up with Alta Vista on search. Well people managed to screw that up. Google will not be easy to beat in search but I wonder if there is a next big thing out there, perhaps not yet thought of, that will suck up all the advertizing dollars that currently go to Google? Beating Google doesn’t have to mean better search – it just has to mean more eyes that are more willing to click on the ads.

  39. Google has a long way to go. I don’t necessarily agree that if/once their growth slows it’s nearing the end, look at what happened to Apple with the ipod.

    What will they expand into – who knows? Everything continues to move to the web; Google is the popular home page. Alot of what they offer ( eg storage space) has declining costs to them, and they are maintaining many of their values and their original, blindingly successful vision.

    So even if people pay nothing or next to nothing for what they offer, an enormous number of people will be looking at their interfaces, with growing frequency. This has unidentified, but obviously large and to a large extent unexplored, permission marketing potential.

    If a non-google interface can take over, so be it, but I see the google.com home page, gmail, googlemaps, google publishing apps, and other google widgets being household ‘homes’ for a while to come.

    Of course, google came out of nowehere, amazine what 5 years can do. Maybe someone else will enable users to ‘skin’ an interface for the web that is more inclusive and personalized before google can.

  40. Google has a long way to go. I don’t necessarily agree that if/once their growth slows it’s nearing the end, look at what happened to Apple with the ipod.

    What will they expand into – who knows? Everything continues to move to the web; Google is the popular home page. Alot of what they offer ( eg storage space) has declining costs to them, and they are maintaining many of their values and their original, blindingly successful vision.

    So even if people pay nothing or next to nothing for what they offer, an enormous number of people will be looking at their interfaces, with growing frequency. This has unidentified, but obviously large and to a large extent unexplored, permission marketing potential.

    If a non-google interface can take over, so be it, but I see the google.com home page, gmail, googlemaps, google publishing apps, and other google widgets being household ‘homes’ for a while to come.

    Of course, google came out of nowehere, amazine what 5 years can do. Maybe someone else will enable users to ‘skin’ an interface for the web that is more inclusive and personalized before google can.

  41. In addition to advertising, I believe Google will enter the enterprise market judging by their recent acquisitions, including Writely and Jotspot.
    I do not think Google will crash anytime in the near future.

  42. In addition to advertising, I believe Google will enter the enterprise market judging by their recent acquisitions, including Writely and Jotspot.
    I do not think Google will crash anytime in the near future.

  43. Global ad spending is approaching $400B this year. And the spending is shifting towards internet ads. US based Yellow Pages alone, which is quickly being replaced by Google Local, represents $20B of that.

    So Google has a long way to go until it reaches saturation. If Google only captures 10% market share of global ad revenue, which is realistic over the next few years, they will be on par with total Microsoft revenue, with perhaps even bigger profit margins than Microsoft has. That would indicate a stock price of about $1,000 for GOOG.

    In other markets though, like Enterprise software, Google will continue to see almost no revenue for obvious reasons.

    Google is their worst enemy themselves. As long as they keep their priorities straight, they will do fine. Yes, we will see some bumps in the road, especially in quarters they “disappoint” Wall Street. But seen over a few years, they will be fine.

  44. Global ad spending is approaching $400B this year. And the spending is shifting towards internet ads. US based Yellow Pages alone, which is quickly being replaced by Google Local, represents $20B of that.

    So Google has a long way to go until it reaches saturation. If Google only captures 10% market share of global ad revenue, which is realistic over the next few years, they will be on par with total Microsoft revenue, with perhaps even bigger profit margins than Microsoft has. That would indicate a stock price of about $1,000 for GOOG.

    In other markets though, like Enterprise software, Google will continue to see almost no revenue for obvious reasons.

    Google is their worst enemy themselves. As long as they keep their priorities straight, they will do fine. Yes, we will see some bumps in the road, especially in quarters they “disappoint” Wall Street. But seen over a few years, they will be fine.

  45. Robert: You say you see hundreds of businesses in Wales that are not online, and therefore conclude that Google’s growth isn’t close to being done yet.

    I don’t know if you are right or wrong, but the one problem I see with your reasoning is that Google has limited inventory. There are only so many ads that Google can show on the first page of results, for any given keyword. Yes, there are a lot of keywords.. but type in anything right now, and there are usually already dozens of ads attached to that word. And Google has said time and again that users do not look past the first page of results, therefore not past the first page of ads. Therefore, Google has a limited inventory.

    If those hundreds of businesses in Wales want to come online, they are going to have to compete fiercely with already-established advertisers, for the keywords that are important to them. That might mean more revenue for Google; that also might mean most businesses are going to be unwilling to fork over so much cash. The more people there are trying to bid up prices to get onto the first page of Google results, the lower the advertising ROI. That that is only going to increase as more businesses try the Google model.

    So Google might not crash, but there is also not this unlimited growth potential, either. Businesses that are not online might never go online, because of the fierce competition and limited inventory of Google’s ad space.

  46. Robert: You say you see hundreds of businesses in Wales that are not online, and therefore conclude that Google’s growth isn’t close to being done yet.

    I don’t know if you are right or wrong, but the one problem I see with your reasoning is that Google has limited inventory. There are only so many ads that Google can show on the first page of results, for any given keyword. Yes, there are a lot of keywords.. but type in anything right now, and there are usually already dozens of ads attached to that word. And Google has said time and again that users do not look past the first page of results, therefore not past the first page of ads. Therefore, Google has a limited inventory.

    If those hundreds of businesses in Wales want to come online, they are going to have to compete fiercely with already-established advertisers, for the keywords that are important to them. That might mean more revenue for Google; that also might mean most businesses are going to be unwilling to fork over so much cash. The more people there are trying to bid up prices to get onto the first page of Google results, the lower the advertising ROI. That that is only going to increase as more businesses try the Google model.

    So Google might not crash, but there is also not this unlimited growth potential, either. Businesses that are not online might never go online, because of the fierce competition and limited inventory of Google’s ad space.

  47. People keep mentioning the words bubble and Google in the same sentence. But they keep forgetting one very thing: Google is profitable, very profitable (and they were already profitable before their IPO), they have a proven business model.

    Does not really look like a dot-com era startup, isn’t it?

  48. People keep mentioning the words bubble and Google in the same sentence. But they keep forgetting one very thing: Google is profitable, very profitable (and they were already profitable before their IPO), they have a proven business model.

    Does not really look like a dot-com era startup, isn’t it?

  49. Google will crash hard then level out and the reason is the most obvious one, people are leaving Google search. Google is losing its relevance as it’s becoming more and more difficult to find desired results in a search.

    WHEN Google was a search company, search was good and results were highly revelevant and I switched to using Google exclusively… as did many people I know. Now that Google is becoming an advertising business its search sucks more each day and I’m using other engines more frequently. So are others.

    It’s cyclical. A better search will come along and we’ll all migrate. It will grow then head down the advertising track, become polluted with garbage, and drive us away. The cycle will repeat. It’s been that way since the beginning and it will be that way until the end.

  50. Google will crash hard then level out and the reason is the most obvious one, people are leaving Google search. Google is losing its relevance as it’s becoming more and more difficult to find desired results in a search.

    WHEN Google was a search company, search was good and results were highly revelevant and I switched to using Google exclusively… as did many people I know. Now that Google is becoming an advertising business its search sucks more each day and I’m using other engines more frequently. So are others.

    It’s cyclical. A better search will come along and we’ll all migrate. It will grow then head down the advertising track, become polluted with garbage, and drive us away. The cycle will repeat. It’s been that way since the beginning and it will be that way until the end.

  51. We can’t assume Google’s main ongoing business is ‘search’ – even though they sometimes claim it is. Seems their main business is market research and display. Lots of growth there.

    The ‘Wales problem’ … there’s no reason for me to find a vet service in Wales if I live in Botswana. Seems there is a lot of demand for regionally targetted search results, and I think Adsense is just scratching the surface here.
    What’s more, the more my computer’s IP is linked to a growing record of my google preferences, the more the chance of ever-better-targetted ads coming my way. Meaning, more value to me, and to the advertiser. Lots of growth here too.

  52. We can’t assume Google’s main ongoing business is ‘search’ – even though they sometimes claim it is. Seems their main business is market research and display. Lots of growth there.

    The ‘Wales problem’ … there’s no reason for me to find a vet service in Wales if I live in Botswana. Seems there is a lot of demand for regionally targetted search results, and I think Adsense is just scratching the surface here.
    What’s more, the more my computer’s IP is linked to a growing record of my google preferences, the more the chance of ever-better-targetted ads coming my way. Meaning, more value to me, and to the advertiser. Lots of growth here too.

  53. Come on, Wales? Ok, I agree with the international part but they’ll likely grow internationally through acquisition. APAC and EMEA already have their search preferences but who knows, Google has the capability to get serious market share in both. As for getting businesses on board, well, Gore started the whole title-less organization thing (ie: matrix organizations.) Who’s to say that Google won’t be entirely effective there. Eric Schmidt almost defends the lack of organization when interviewed.

  54. Come on, Wales? Ok, I agree with the international part but they’ll likely grow internationally through acquisition. APAC and EMEA already have their search preferences but who knows, Google has the capability to get serious market share in both. As for getting businesses on board, well, Gore started the whole title-less organization thing (ie: matrix organizations.) Who’s to say that Google won’t be entirely effective there. Eric Schmidt almost defends the lack of organization when interviewed.

  55. Unless they create a new advertising stream their growth will be greatly hampered when Adwords plateaus. Online spend will continue to grow but other channels must open wider.

  56. Unless they create a new advertising stream their growth will be greatly hampered when Adwords plateaus. Online spend will continue to grow but other channels must open wider.

  57. Sooner than most people think ( or i hope at least) for the following reasons-

    1 Loss of appeal:
    -Tech is rebellious. Google succeeded with “don’t be evil” motto. Now look around and you will find a new evil vs old evils. All devils go to hell, sooner or later.
    -At least in Europe, google is a bureaucracy and not a meritocracy. They will encounter the symptoms of big blue. Just wait of couple of years. Just look at the job adverts and you will see what kind of people google is looking for.

    2 Limited top line growth:
    -Every market vendors in the long tail wont be able to bid 25£ keywords. There is limited horizon for exponential growth.
    -Second tier marketeers will lose by competing with the 1st tier marketeers. Look out for an alternative arrangement which should be somewhere in the corner.
    -Third, marketing Google styled is a black magic. At one moment the advertisers will know how much value for money are they getting.

    3Loss of focus
    -After search and Ad sense Google doesn’t have a lineup of another killer App

    Timing of Burst:
    The next big economic crunch will wipe out this frantic valuations. It might come from another geopolitical shock or dollar crash or any other events. I havent yet forgotten boom and bust cycle of capitalism.

    Reminds me of altavista, askjeeves, snap.com and inktomi.. I guess doom sayers like me are camping on a site and waiting for the next crunch.

  58. Sooner than most people think ( or i hope at least) for the following reasons-

    1 Loss of appeal:
    -Tech is rebellious. Google succeeded with “don’t be evil” motto. Now look around and you will find a new evil vs old evils. All devils go to hell, sooner or later.
    -At least in Europe, google is a bureaucracy and not a meritocracy. They will encounter the symptoms of big blue. Just wait of couple of years. Just look at the job adverts and you will see what kind of people google is looking for.

    2 Limited top line growth:
    -Every market vendors in the long tail wont be able to bid 25£ keywords. There is limited horizon for exponential growth.
    -Second tier marketeers will lose by competing with the 1st tier marketeers. Look out for an alternative arrangement which should be somewhere in the corner.
    -Third, marketing Google styled is a black magic. At one moment the advertisers will know how much value for money are they getting.

    3Loss of focus
    -After search and Ad sense Google doesn’t have a lineup of another killer App

    Timing of Burst:
    The next big economic crunch will wipe out this frantic valuations. It might come from another geopolitical shock or dollar crash or any other events. I havent yet forgotten boom and bust cycle of capitalism.

    Reminds me of altavista, askjeeves, snap.com and inktomi.. I guess doom sayers like me are camping on a site and waiting for the next crunch.

  59. Re: The ‘Wales’ problem: Maybe local targetting might indeed increase the amount of ad real estate available. But there are two immediate problems I can see with that:

    (1) There are a limited number of businesses for which search is truly local. Finding a vet or a plumber, yes. But buying books? Ordering specialty foods? Buying TVs, DVDs, software, video game consoles, etc. Those are all not-necessarily-local activities, and will face non-local competition. Hence for almost everything but the vet and the plumber, we’re back to the limited real estate problem.

    (2) Now, for the vet and the plumber: If things truly are so local, then you are only going to have 3, maybe 4 vets, total, that will ever advertise in your local area — because there are no more than 3 or 4 vets, in existence in your local area! And in that case, let us suppose that all 4 vets use AdWords. Well, if I know for a fact that my vet ad is only competing with 3 other vet ads, I am not going to bid more than a penny or two for that ad. Why would I? Most people call a few vets anyway, when doing their YellowPages search. So what if I am ranked 3rd and not 1st? People looking for vets are going to call me, anyway. Thus, Google only makes a penny on me.. hardly enough to guarantee future wild revenue growth.

    So you have this paradox: If Google keeps the ads “global”, then there is too much competition, and most people don’t play. But if Google makes the ads truly “local”, then there is not enough competition, and nobody bids high for any keyword — and Google still doesn’t grow. It might not crash, but its future certainly isn’t huge growth.

  60. Re: The ‘Wales’ problem: Maybe local targetting might indeed increase the amount of ad real estate available. But there are two immediate problems I can see with that:

    (1) There are a limited number of businesses for which search is truly local. Finding a vet or a plumber, yes. But buying books? Ordering specialty foods? Buying TVs, DVDs, software, video game consoles, etc. Those are all not-necessarily-local activities, and will face non-local competition. Hence for almost everything but the vet and the plumber, we’re back to the limited real estate problem.

    (2) Now, for the vet and the plumber: If things truly are so local, then you are only going to have 3, maybe 4 vets, total, that will ever advertise in your local area — because there are no more than 3 or 4 vets, in existence in your local area! And in that case, let us suppose that all 4 vets use AdWords. Well, if I know for a fact that my vet ad is only competing with 3 other vet ads, I am not going to bid more than a penny or two for that ad. Why would I? Most people call a few vets anyway, when doing their YellowPages search. So what if I am ranked 3rd and not 1st? People looking for vets are going to call me, anyway. Thus, Google only makes a penny on me.. hardly enough to guarantee future wild revenue growth.

    So you have this paradox: If Google keeps the ads “global”, then there is too much competition, and most people don’t play. But if Google makes the ads truly “local”, then there is not enough competition, and nobody bids high for any keyword — and Google still doesn’t grow. It might not crash, but its future certainly isn’t huge growth.

  61. Age Of Nonlinearity

    In a comment on a post from Dave Winer Robert Scoble says he sees nothing that’ll stop Google.I guess that’s true for almost all of us.But what does that say in these nonlinear days?(Who saw the huge rise of Google?)

  62. When I started to notice Google Ads on a high percentages of pages I visited I decided it was time to limit Googles ability to track my web browsing habits by blocking the Google Ad and Analytics domains at my router.

    I then thought about Googles extensive mining of information for its own purposes and have since decided to become a Google free zone. I have since blocked all known Google domains at my Network Router. My full network is now free of Google spying.

    I do realize that the other search engines also mine data but I can not block them all as a roll your own search engine is not practical. So I now choose to use a search that is not so widespread in it’s plastering of ads on third party sites. I do block many of these third party tracking domains at my network router.

    Some may say that advertising is needed to support the web but it is my opinion advertising has ruined the web. Information is now obscured by monetary decisions. He who pays more gets more sway in the spread of information. Call me a communist if you want but this capitalist control of information is completely against my belief.

  63. When I started to notice Google Ads on a high percentages of pages I visited I decided it was time to limit Googles ability to track my web browsing habits by blocking the Google Ad and Analytics domains at my router.

    I then thought about Googles extensive mining of information for its own purposes and have since decided to become a Google free zone. I have since blocked all known Google domains at my Network Router. My full network is now free of Google spying.

    I do realize that the other search engines also mine data but I can not block them all as a roll your own search engine is not practical. So I now choose to use a search that is not so widespread in it’s plastering of ads on third party sites. I do block many of these third party tracking domains at my network router.

    Some may say that advertising is needed to support the web but it is my opinion advertising has ruined the web. Information is now obscured by monetary decisions. He who pays more gets more sway in the spread of information. Call me a communist if you want but this capitalist control of information is completely against my belief.

  64. huh ?? if google ever dies.. how about ..

    a) recession mode ( net worth of ALL market’s drop)
    b) US .gov will lose its right arm for counter intillgence activities
    c) google Fans will become rabid ..mass hystria

    ‘..nuff said

  65. huh ?? if google ever dies.. how about ..

    a) recession mode ( net worth of ALL market’s drop)
    b) US .gov will lose its right arm for counter intillgence activities
    c) google Fans will become rabid ..mass hystria

    ‘..nuff said

  66. “That said, someone’s clicking on those ads. My friends are making thousands of dollars per month from them.”

    The bloggers that host the ads are making money, but what about the advertisers themselves? The advertisers are the source of the money and if they’re not getting their money’s worth, they won’t continue paying Google’s ad fees, which means that Google would have to lower the fees or advertisers stop placing the ads in the first place; both scenarios would cut the money that bloggers are making.

    So the question is, are enough people clicking the ads to justify what Google is charging advertisers? I think this has yet to be determined. Nobody I know looks at internet ads at all, and I seriously doubt that enough people click them to justify Google and the bloggers making billions from those clicks. I think right now Google and the bloggers are taking the advertisers to the cleaners, but we’ll see the ad revenue go down as the advertisers see that they’re paying more for the ads than they are getting back in sales.

  67. “That said, someone’s clicking on those ads. My friends are making thousands of dollars per month from them.”

    The bloggers that host the ads are making money, but what about the advertisers themselves? The advertisers are the source of the money and if they’re not getting their money’s worth, they won’t continue paying Google’s ad fees, which means that Google would have to lower the fees or advertisers stop placing the ads in the first place; both scenarios would cut the money that bloggers are making.

    So the question is, are enough people clicking the ads to justify what Google is charging advertisers? I think this has yet to be determined. Nobody I know looks at internet ads at all, and I seriously doubt that enough people click them to justify Google and the bloggers making billions from those clicks. I think right now Google and the bloggers are taking the advertisers to the cleaners, but we’ll see the ad revenue go down as the advertisers see that they’re paying more for the ads than they are getting back in sales.

  68. “Some may say that advertising is needed to support the web but it is my opinion advertising has ruined the web. Information is now obscured by monetary decisions.”

    I wouldn’t go as far as blocking all Google domains, robertson, but I do agree that advertising, in its current form, is ruining the web experience. There are many articles that, rather than being 1 to 3 pages long, are on 15 to 20 pages long, each page having just one or two paragraphs, and each page loaded with Google ads. So, the article becomes a chore to read for the sake of loading the article up with as many Google ads as possible.

    This is not something that should be celebrated, like Google fanboys and cheerleaders (e.g. Scoble himself) like to do.

  69. “Some may say that advertising is needed to support the web but it is my opinion advertising has ruined the web. Information is now obscured by monetary decisions.”

    I wouldn’t go as far as blocking all Google domains, robertson, but I do agree that advertising, in its current form, is ruining the web experience. There are many articles that, rather than being 1 to 3 pages long, are on 15 to 20 pages long, each page having just one or two paragraphs, and each page loaded with Google ads. So, the article becomes a chore to read for the sake of loading the article up with as many Google ads as possible.

    This is not something that should be celebrated, like Google fanboys and cheerleaders (e.g. Scoble himself) like to do.

  70. “Most people call a few vets anyway, when doing their YellowPages search. So what if I am ranked 3rd and not 1st? People looking for vets are going to call me, anyway. Thus, Google only makes a penny on me.. hardly enough to guarantee future wild revenue growth.”

    Ahh, but you need to get with the times. “Yellow Pages” is *dead*. The Google cheerleaders (including Scoble) have declared it so.

  71. “Most people call a few vets anyway, when doing their YellowPages search. So what if I am ranked 3rd and not 1st? People looking for vets are going to call me, anyway. Thus, Google only makes a penny on me.. hardly enough to guarantee future wild revenue growth.”

    Ahh, but you need to get with the times. “Yellow Pages” is *dead*. The Google cheerleaders (including Scoble) have declared it so.

  72. The Sky is Falling 2.0

    Are we supposed to panic now and cry that the sky is falling just because one financial publication claims that Google is overrated?

  73. The way Google has been constantly rising the CPMs and putting additional pressure into the AdWords parameters is not just seasonal (numerous reports out there related to what’s going on for Christmas), it’s a desperate move. There is a limit to how much you can screw advertisers. The “multiple revenue” Winer talks about, although true so far, is not limitless. Watch the inflexion point.

    Unrelated, technically speaking, if Microsoft were not trying to participate in this text-ad thing, they could have shipped IE7 with a built-in text ad blocker, and Google would lose 1% market share every day. Dead.

    My 2 cents

  74. The way Google has been constantly rising the CPMs and putting additional pressure into the AdWords parameters is not just seasonal (numerous reports out there related to what’s going on for Christmas), it’s a desperate move. There is a limit to how much you can screw advertisers. The “multiple revenue” Winer talks about, although true so far, is not limitless. Watch the inflexion point.

    Unrelated, technically speaking, if Microsoft were not trying to participate in this text-ad thing, they could have shipped IE7 with a built-in text ad blocker, and Google would lose 1% market share every day. Dead.

    My 2 cents

  75. [...] Dave Winer says Web Bubble Burst 2.0 will come about when Google’s stock crashes and that we’re safe as long as Google is doing well. Scoble believes there’s nothing that can stop Google. Even if the domestic market stops growing, he says there is a lot of scope for growth in international markets and as long as that potential exists, Google will continue to grow at alarming rates. He further goes on to say that Google is in the same position that Microsoft was in 18 years ago and we all know how far Microsoft has come.  I guess he’s right too. For a long time Microsoft had just one source of revenues – Windows. Even now, about 90% of their revenues come from Office and Windows. Most of Google’s revenue comes from advertisements. [...]

  76. Google’s Fall is not far… People have already started feeling the Monopoly… SO soon they will stop clickin ads…and thats the end

  77. Google’s Fall is not far… People have already started feeling the Monopoly… SO soon they will stop clickin ads…and thats the end

  78. An ode to Google;
    Search engine, search engine fell on your head,
    search engine, search engine soon you’ll be dead.
    All of the bad SERPS from spammin’ and stuff,
    search engine, search engine, when is enough?
    Search engine, search engine why all the ads?
    Search engine, search engine your time is in fads.

  79. An ode to Google;
    Search engine, search engine fell on your head,
    search engine, search engine soon you’ll be dead.
    All of the bad SERPS from spammin’ and stuff,
    search engine, search engine, when is enough?
    Search engine, search engine why all the ads?
    Search engine, search engine your time is in fads.

  80. I think everyone is looking a very limited set of services that google has to offer. Google is still very very fast as a search engine, just that will keep it going for a while. The new yahoo mail and even livemail (hotmail) aren’t really nearly as good as gmail. Who knows what they have up their sleeve? – They have tools like google gadgets, and as technology moves more and more ‘online’. Its true other companies, notably Microsoft and Yahoo (well many more) may steal their business model, but I also believe google have plenty more to offer in the future – they are very innovative.

  81. I think everyone is looking a very limited set of services that google has to offer. Google is still very very fast as a search engine, just that will keep it going for a while. The new yahoo mail and even livemail (hotmail) aren’t really nearly as good as gmail. Who knows what they have up their sleeve? – They have tools like google gadgets, and as technology moves more and more ‘online’. Its true other companies, notably Microsoft and Yahoo (well many more) may steal their business model, but I also believe google have plenty more to offer in the future – they are very innovative.

  82. I used to love Google but lately I find it’s less and less useful. Many many years ago I swore by Metacrawler as my searchengine of choice. Eventually I got tired of every metacrawler search leading to the same dozen or so websites, so I moved elsewhere.

    I see the same thing starting to occur with Google. I search but I can’t ever find what I’m looking for. If I want straight information I just go straight to Wikipedia. If I want interesting personalized blog content I check Technorati. Though I’ll admit I tend ot get better results with Google’s Blogsearch.

  83. I used to love Google but lately I find it’s less and less useful. Many many years ago I swore by Metacrawler as my searchengine of choice. Eventually I got tired of every metacrawler search leading to the same dozen or so websites, so I moved elsewhere.

    I see the same thing starting to occur with Google. I search but I can’t ever find what I’m looking for. If I want straight information I just go straight to Wikipedia. If I want interesting personalized blog content I check Technorati. Though I’ll admit I tend ot get better results with Google’s Blogsearch.

  84. I think Google has more innovations(either through acquisition/own stuff) coming in marketplace.Be it YouTube, D&S and other stuffs.
    I think if Google can offer much innovative “Vertical search” creating service(through Google CSE co-op), they will able to increase their inventory, spread the AD in various industry segment and multiply GOOG’s capability and market penetration.

  85. I think Google has more innovations(either through acquisition/own stuff) coming in marketplace.Be it YouTube, D&S and other stuffs.
    I think if Google can offer much innovative “Vertical search” creating service(through Google CSE co-op), they will able to increase their inventory, spread the AD in various industry segment and multiply GOOG’s capability and market penetration.

  86. “I don’t celebrate sites that do things like that. They are as dead as the Yellow Pages are.”

    Robert, if those sites are “dead”, how come I see more and more of them every day? (Unless you’re backing off your “Yellow Pages is dead” claim, in which case your statement might make some sense.)

    BTW, did you see today that Google waved the white flag regarding “Google Answers”? Yet another failed Google project, but this one failed so dismally as to be cancelled altogether. Score one for Yahoo.

  87. “I don’t celebrate sites that do things like that. They are as dead as the Yellow Pages are.”

    Robert, if those sites are “dead”, how come I see more and more of them every day? (Unless you’re backing off your “Yellow Pages is dead” claim, in which case your statement might make some sense.)

    BTW, did you see today that Google waved the white flag regarding “Google Answers”? Yet another failed Google project, but this one failed so dismally as to be cancelled altogether. Score one for Yahoo.

  88. I think the assumption that Google will crash is a dubious one. They have caught hold of a major disruption in business models, just as Microsoft did.

    I remember in the early 90s people saying that Microsoft’s growth couldn’t justify their stock price. I remember people in the Mid 90s saying it too. Take a look at what Microsoft’s stock price has done since the mid 90s. Yes, it’s well off it’s peak in 2000, and it’s not going anywhere, but its still 4-5x it’s 1995 price.

    As Scoble notes, there are still lots of existing advertisers who haven’t joined the transition, and there are lots of organizations (or parts of organizations) that never advertised before who are starting to take advantage of the ability to narrowly target advertisements and measure/track performance.

    Maybe Google isn’t the ultimate beneficiary of this shift (though they seem to have the strongest position right now). Still I think it’s dubious to assume there will be a major crash in the sector when looked at over the next 10-15 years.

    That doesn’t mean that there couldn’t be hard times over smaller time frames though.

  89. I think the assumption that Google will crash is a dubious one. They have caught hold of a major disruption in business models, just as Microsoft did.

    I remember in the early 90s people saying that Microsoft’s growth couldn’t justify their stock price. I remember people in the Mid 90s saying it too. Take a look at what Microsoft’s stock price has done since the mid 90s. Yes, it’s well off it’s peak in 2000, and it’s not going anywhere, but its still 4-5x it’s 1995 price.

    As Scoble notes, there are still lots of existing advertisers who haven’t joined the transition, and there are lots of organizations (or parts of organizations) that never advertised before who are starting to take advantage of the ability to narrowly target advertisements and measure/track performance.

    Maybe Google isn’t the ultimate beneficiary of this shift (though they seem to have the strongest position right now). Still I think it’s dubious to assume there will be a major crash in the sector when looked at over the next 10-15 years.

    That doesn’t mean that there couldn’t be hard times over smaller time frames though.

  90. The difference though, is that Google is not where Microsoft was in the 1980′s. Adjusted for splits, Microsoft IPO’d at 9 cents a share, and rose 290-fold since then. Since Google IPO’d at a market cap of $25B, it would have to be a $7.25 trillion dollar company to do that. The US GNP for 2004 is $11.7 trillion. It can never grow at that rate.

    (Kudo’s to Wynn Quon for all the data in his great article in January).

  91. The difference though, is that Google is not where Microsoft was in the 1980′s. Adjusted for splits, Microsoft IPO’d at 9 cents a share, and rose 290-fold since then. Since Google IPO’d at a market cap of $25B, it would have to be a $7.25 trillion dollar company to do that. The US GNP for 2004 is $11.7 trillion. It can never grow at that rate.

    (Kudo’s to Wynn Quon for all the data in his great article in January).

  92. GOOGLE is a good company. But the price of its stock is highly over pirced. The price of under $314 per share is logical and reasonable with PE ratio as well as over-time growth. The investment world should realize this and gradually – in five to 10 days – bring it down. Otherwise many people are going to get hurt.

    If we don’t bring it down gradually, there will be a bubble burst and the market will follow the crash.

  93. GOOGLE is a good company. But the price of its stock is highly over pirced. The price of under $314 per share is logical and reasonable with PE ratio as well as over-time growth. The investment world should realize this and gradually – in five to 10 days – bring it down. Otherwise many people are going to get hurt.

    If we don’t bring it down gradually, there will be a bubble burst and the market will follow the crash.