Jay Bhatti in Portfolio Magazine

Portfolio Yahoo Gets Vertical Search. Where’s Microsoft, Google?
by Blaise Zerega | July 10, 2008 | PDF of Article

Today, Jay Bhatti was mentioned in Portfolio magazine.

Yahoo Gets Vertical Search. Where’s Microsoft, Google?
Blaise Zerega still hasn’t found what he’s looking for. Yahoo’s announcement to offer BOSS (Build Your Own Search Service– what happened to the Y?), is a better late than never attempt to do something different to compete with Google. Fair enough. But what’s particularly interesting is that the announcement is proof that many people – this editor included, think there’s a huge market opportunity for vertical search. It’s been overlooked as the Google juggernaut has tried to be all things to all people (quite successfully and quite profitably, I might add.)

Consider the people search engine Spock.com — if you haven’t tried it, do. Query your name in Spock and then do it with Google and Yahoo. Compare the results and you’ll see what co-founder Jay Bhatti has been up to since quitting Microsoft. Hey, Microsoft, why didn’t LiveSearch spot this niche?

Or for a slightly different take, think search + ecommerce. Consider Kayak.com, for travel. Or any number of wine search engines: wineaccess.com, wine-searcher.com, or winezap.com.

And while I’m at it, there’s a raft of other search engines out there, all chasing Google in some fashion. I like Clusty, Me.dium, and iSeek.

Among these startups, Kimbal Musk’s Me.dium is using Yahoo’s BOSS (see NYT article.) Whether BOSS gains traction, and whether Yahoo can marshal an army of Davids in its battle with the Goliath Google are questions that, given Yahoo’s uncertain future, we may never see answered.

What we will see, however, is an evolution of the search market to include these narrow plays. After all, on the web, it’s only by going niche that you build a broad audience.

Email this to someoneShare on FacebookShare on Google+Tweet about this on TwitterShare on LinkedIn

Leave a Reply