Why Search is broken, and how we intend to fix it.

A while back, Mark Cuban wrote an article  stating that “Google is late on everything” – arguing that what good is a search results page if the data is out dated?

I think he was half-right, Recency of search results is important.. But the real problem with search today, is that no search platform considers availability as a ranking factor.

This is the entire reason why I decided to build www.tawk.to and offer it completely free for any business to use, and it’s also the reason why we’ve amassed over 100,000+ active users in very little time.

Put simply:

When I search for a Pizza Delivery Service.. I want to find the store that delivers to my location and that is still delivering at the time I execute the search.

I like Pizza. A lot. I don’t want to have to sift through dozens of results to just find the store that is open, and to have to ask if they deliver to my place… And what if I need an emergency plumber? Need to find an Insurance Agent? Or if I need to find a local cleaner for some help around the house?

The most relevant and valuable search results,  would be the company or person that is available to deliver the product or service now, not the company that has spent the most optimizing their site for certain keywords, or are paying per click on Adwords, even though their business is closed until the morning.

At 3AM after a day buried in work, what I want is a Pizza, delivered, Now. Not a treasure hunt through a list of websites to sift through, hoping that one of them is open after visiting 20 different sites.

Compare these two experiences, the image on the left is the current Google results page, filled with ads that do not take availability in to consideration at all, and the image on the right is a screenshot of what the www.tawk.to geo search looks like after a search  :

With www.tawk.to, you’re able to see which plumbers are closest to you, which are open or closed, and if they are available to chat with you instantly, or to leave a message if they are offline. When the plumber gets back online, they’ll have a message waiting for them and they can reply to you directly.

Google facilitates low-involvement-informational purchase decisions well, though high-involvement-informational/transformational  decisions by nature require that you “speak” with someone prior to making a purchase decision, or requires that the product or service be available at the time of search. Google’s current search offering is dated, it doesn’t cater well for those type of transactions, at scale. (Buying a Pizza a 3am, buying a car, getting a mortgage, listing your property for sale, booking a cruise etc)

There are so many high value transactions that we make every day that require a conversation with someone prior to making a purchase decision, and so many time sensitive searches each day that are simply not catered for in the search engines.

The missing element is availability in the Search > Discover > Engage process of making a transactional decision.

This is why I built www.tawk.to, and that’s why we offer it for free for any business to use. Your customers want to buy from you, all you have to do is be available to service them.

Today, there are over 100,000 business users on www.tawk.to. From big brands like Mercedes Benz and Sheraton Hotels, to hundreds of hosting companies, florists, Plumbers, Private drivers etc.. As we continue to grow, we will release our geo-engine that will allow you to search for almost anything, and find the product or service that is available to be of service to you now.

As someone tweeted to us earlier in the week, if all goes to plan.. www.tawk.to will fast become the “Uber for everything”.

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