Watch out Orbitz – Google is coming for you.
There is an article on Telegraph discussing Google’s plans to offer comparison shopping for airline tickets.
The article quotes Ryanair in Europe, but the assumption is that Google plans to roll its effort out worldwide.
This move makes sense. Google is the best at searching through all kinds of information and providing the best results for searchers. If you’re in an industry of providing comparison information or searching information Google could be in your crosshairs in the future.
For some reason, a lot of companies have been trying to provide the best airline comparison shopping site. I’m not really sure why, but maybe it’s because those in the tech world are frequent travelers and they want to get the best price on the best airlines.
There are a few sites out there that do a good job, but it’s hard to believe that any would do a better job than Google especially since Google’s business model, as noted by the Ryanair exec, is advertising. It doesn’t have to charge the airlines for any organic listings.
But I think that might be a mistake on the airlines’ part. I think Google is moving toward an all paid advertising model. As long as Google can hold to its mission to provide the most relevant search results there is no rule against those results being entirely paid.
The Google Threat
There are many threats that come from Google.
In regards to this article the threat is that Google has the power to go into any industry that provides sorted information. This time it’s the airline industry, but they’re already been doing business directories and other information directories.
If you’re in the online business of curating information or giving people access to quick information you’re going up against Google. You might not be going against them now, but in the future the threat will always be there.
The question to ask is whether Google poses a threat to your business model. Can they blow you out of the water?
If the answer is yes then the time to make a change is now.
The Change: Be A Creator
The change to make is to start creating your own content.
Right now, Google doesn’t seem to have the goal of creating its own content. They might in the future and at that time some others will be in trouble, but right now Google is all about curating information and making it easy for people to find that information quickly and accurately.
Your task is to create the information.
Be a creator of information. Google can take that information and curate. They can send you your potential customers, but they make no promises to do it for free.
This is why you have to build in a variety of sources of traffic. Build an audience by partnering with other content creators. Grow your audiences together. Build your own audience and use them to help you get new audience members.
Google will still try to take this information and make advertising money off it, but as long as you’re the creator you’ll always be in demand.
Even if what you’ve created becomes obsolete you’ll still be in demand because of what you can create in the future.
That’s the key.
Google will blow a lot of businesses out of the water, but if you’re a creator they can’t touch you.