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Yahoo Edges out Google in Customer Satisfaction

Zonk posted more than 6 years ago | from the some-yodels-of-joy-are-heard dept.

Yahoo! 212

athloi writes "The University of Michigan's American Consumer Satisfaction Index shows some significant shifts this year in consumer satisfaction among several major online players: Google, Yahoo, Ask, and AOL. For one, Google no longer holds first place. 'The ACSI report notes that Yahoo's jump into first place was a 4 percent increase over its score from last year, while Google saw a 4 percent decrease during the same time period. ACSI says that to the untrained eye, Google's home page today looks almost identical to the way it looked years ago. This is where Google's simplicity is apparently hurting it in the long-term, as new users just aren't seeing Google's new offerings--such as increased storage options, additions to Google Maps, and tweaks to Google Image Search--right in front of their faces like they do with other sites.'"

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212 comments

Good ping times (4, Funny)

suso (153703) | more than 6 years ago | (#20228501)

Yeah, I have no gripes with Yahoo, they always return my ping requests within milliseconds.

Re:Good ping times (2, Insightful)

CastrTroy (595695) | more than 6 years ago | (#20229759)

Not only that, who are their customers? Users might be more appropriate wording. It's not like many (any) people actually pay money to these companies for their services.

Re:Good ping times (3, Funny)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#20229839)

Yes you are right. I did my own study on this, and here are my results:

Pinging www.yahoo-ht3.akadns.net [209.131.36.158] with 32 bytes of data:

Reply from 209.131.36.158: bytes=32 time=5ms TTL=50
Reply from 209.131.36.158: bytes=32 time=4ms TTL=51
Reply from 209.131.36.158: bytes=32 time=5ms TTL=50
Reply from 209.131.36.158: bytes=32 time=5ms TTL=51

Ping statistics for 209.131.36.158:
        Packets: Sent = 4, Received = 4, Lost = 0 (0% loss),
Approximate round trip times in milli-seconds:
        Minimum = 4ms, Maximum = 5ms, Average = 4ms

--------------------

Pinging www.l.google.com [74.125.19.103] with 32 bytes of data:

Reply from 74.125.19.103: bytes=32 time=6ms TTL=238
Reply from 74.125.19.103: bytes=32 time=6ms TTL=238
Reply from 74.125.19.103: bytes=32 time=6ms TTL=238
Reply from 74.125.19.103: bytes=32 time=6ms TTL=238

Ping statistics for 74.125.19.103:
        Packets: Sent = 4, Received = 4, Lost = 0 (0% loss),
Approximate round trip times in milli-seconds:
        Minimum = 6ms, Maximum = 6ms, Average = 6ms

As the above scientific study shows, Yahoo wins hands down by a margin of 1.25ms!

Yahoo! - it's the new AOL. (4, Funny)

seanadams.com (463190) | more than 6 years ago | (#20228511)

Who exactly takes these surveys? Isn't it largely midwestern housewives who have time to answer the phone during the day, and are happy just to have someone to talk to?

Re:Yahoo! - it's the new AOL. (5, Funny)

Sciros (986030) | more than 6 years ago | (#20228717)

Hey, who are you calling largely?!

It's true we just sit around the house, and I mean literally *around the house,* and have no-one to talk to, but that doesn't give you the right to make fun of our weight!

(Ok I had 1 hour of sleep and I don't know how many coffees. Please excuse!)

Re:Yahoo! - it's the new AOL. (-1, Flamebait)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#20228729)

Your implication is that all the "uncool" people mess up the survey and prevent what is obvious to every geek/google fanboy from being declared. If it doesn't say Google is best, there is a problem somewhere, but it sure aint with Google.

Re:Yahoo! - it's the new AOL. (3, Interesting)

Sergeant Pepper (1098225) | more than 6 years ago | (#20228857)

Actually, his implication had nothing at all to do with that. Statistically, it is very difficult to conduct a survey that is unbiased and this one most likely was biased. If they send papers to people requesting a response it could have self-selection bias. If they call people that is another type of bias because your results would be more geared towards some groups of people than others (people who work from home, the unemployed, housewives, etc.).

I'd like to see how they conducted their survey (too lazy to RTFA) but I would almost guarantee that there was some sort of bias present. As for whether or not it affected the outcome... that's a horse of a different color.

Re:Yahoo! - it's the new AOL. (1)

MontyApollo (849862) | more than 6 years ago | (#20229177)

The thread title "Yahoo - it's the new AOL" seems to indicate that the implication was beyond just the fact that the survey may be biased.

Re:Yahoo! - it's the new AOL. (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#20229619)

Any survey has bias included. As much as many may attempt to claim that their survey is "unbiased", it will still contain bias. Even with a honest attempt to prevent bias, there will be bias. The bias begins on selection of questions to be answered in the survey and continues to grow through the selection process of targets of the survey and whether or not those targets are willing to participate in the survey or even any survey. Method of contacting the targets is also a bias. Many surveys are generated to provide promotion for products, services, companies and politicians etc. People should always keep these things in mind when informed of survey results and claimed popularity or unpopularity. Widely propogated phone surveys prior to elections often have the wording of the questions set up to influence your opinion and influence your vote.

A lot could be determined about the true intent of a survey if you could find out the actual questions asked (if these were written questions or given vocally, if given vocally you need some samples of actual questions being asked during the survey and listen for inflection on the words), who was included in the survey ( attempted true random sample or *insert bias of selection here* ), and amongst other things the all important *who payed for the survey?*. Also need to look at the choices for answers, those can be not only biased, but creative of bias amongst the surveyed.

Disclaimer: I have a minor in Marketing Research but refuse to work in that field.

Re:Yahoo! - it's the new AOL. (1)

Captain Splendid (673276) | more than 6 years ago | (#20228735)

Yahoo! - it's the new AOL.

Said in total derision, but that's actually a huge thing for them if they do get perceived that way. Only a few years ago, everyboy was predicting their demise...

Re:Yahoo! - it's the new AOL. (2, Funny)

JesseL (107722) | more than 6 years ago | (#20228763)

There will always be money to be made in catering to morons, but it's not really something we all need to aspire to.

Re:Yahoo! - it's the new AOL. (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#20228875)

If it's good enough for the /. editors, it's good enough for us!

Re:Yahoo! - it's the new AOL. (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#20228899)

>>There will always be money to be made in catering to morons, but it's not really something we all need to aspire to.

Yeah, I bet those dumbfuckers still use Windows too. Us snobby geeks are so cool, those non-ubergeek morons don't even realize how pitiful they look to us.

Re:Yahoo! - it's the new AOL. (1)

everphilski (877346) | more than 6 years ago | (#20229211)

'Morons' as you say make purchases off of targeted advertising ... I bet it is what Google 'aspires' to.

Re:Yahoo! - it's the new AOL. (1)

MontyApollo (849862) | more than 6 years ago | (#20229011)

Who exactly posts on Slashdot? Isn't largely geeky virgins living in their mother's basement who have time to post on the internet, and are happy to find some virtual community where everybody agrees with them and feel compelled to defend cool companies and flame uncool companies?

Re:Yahoo! - it's the new AOL. (0)

Khammurabi (962376) | more than 6 years ago | (#20229041)

Experts are dubbing the shift to Yahoo's cluttered home page the "MySpace" effect. In response, Yahoo! has announced it will introduce a new selectable theme for the younger generation, called OMG Ponies.

Re:Yahoo! - it's the new AOL. (4, Insightful)

UbuntuDupe (970646) | more than 6 years ago | (#20229425)

You got modded Funny, undeservedly so. That's a good question, and (with Sargeant Pepper above) I agree: how reliable are these surveys? Who actually answers them anymore? Not younger people, who have an unlisted cell phone for VoIP. (Thanks, earlier telecom/telemarketing practices!) Not people with a life, who view it as a mark of shame to be suckered into taking a survey. Not people an office number you random-dialed, who will leap on any excuse not to talk. ("Oh, sorry, can't do that on company time" *reload Slashdot*) So who's left? A REALLY ****in' skewed sample!

Google still seems to be the most innovative (2, Insightful)

xgr3gx (1068984) | more than 6 years ago | (#20228531)

Google seems to be the best with developers and coming up with new technologies. I still think they rule.
Plus they don't blow money on advertising spots.
Has anyone ever seen an ad for Google?

Re:Google still seems to be the most innovative (1, Interesting)

epee1221 (873140) | more than 6 years ago | (#20228749)

Google seems to be the best with developers and coming up with new technologies.
All of Yahoo's improvements were in their expanding "web portal" services -- they're not taking over search. It's the webmail (now with AJAX!), calendar, photo sharing, etc. that have people interested in Yahoo. Most people don't realize Google offers anything other than search.

Perhaps... (0, Troll)

vigmeister (1112659) | more than 6 years ago | (#20228545)

this is because the people who stuck with Yahoo we're fanbois while new users gravitated to Google and didn't like it as much as fanbois loved Yahoo?

Cheers!

Spot on (3, Interesting)

Prysorra (1040518) | more than 6 years ago | (#20228555)

At least with google maps.

Take a look at yahoo maps. It's ..... done. Those whole world is there.

Now when I want to see if google maps added any countries, I have to go to a BLOGSPOT blog. (http://googlemapsmania.blogspot.com/)

They're waaaayy too slow actually actually finalize a product. Check out the labs. (labs.google.com).

What....*what* is still beta???

Re:Spot on (3, Informative)

IANAAC (692242) | more than 6 years ago | (#20228705)

Take a look at yahoo maps. It's ..... done. Those whole world is there.

Even for parts of the US...

There have been times I've entered an address in google maps and it's come back empty. I can go to yahoo maps and enter the same thing and get a valid result.

It used to be that google maps had the edge with its hybrid and satellite views, but yahoo has all that now too.

Re:Spot on (5, Informative)

garcia (6573) | more than 6 years ago | (#20229633)

It used to be that google maps had the edge with its hybrid and satellite views, but yahoo has all that now too.

Fuck Yahoo and Google. As shitty as it is for me to say this, Microsoft's Live Maps' (in many areas) aerial photos (taken very recently from less than 100 yards and 360 degrees) blows Yahoo, Ask, Google, etc away.

I still use Google Maps/Earth, especially w/topo via GPSVisualizer, plotting shit for work, and viewing converted ARCView files (shapefiles) but when I'm researching a place to camp, a house to buy, or to quickly survey an area we will be visiting, it's Microsoft's Live Maps. I'm very disappointed that Google hasn't kept up and I'm not sure why.

Re:Spot on (1)

dctoastman (995251) | more than 6 years ago | (#20229921)

The aerial photos at maps.live.com are spot on for the region. (249 corporate dr. houma, la. 70360 (I judge all mapping sites by this address since I know it is wrong most of the time))

The aerial photos at maps.google.com and maps.yahoo.com are old. Way old.

However, all three sites use the same street maps, which if you use the Hybrid view on maps.live.com show that you will drive straight into a building.

And the streets are mislabeled. Enterprise doesn't intersect with Hollywood. That's Corporate. What they have labeled as Corporate is some small private drive (that I can't recall the name of).

And the aerial photo (maps.live.com) can't be more than one or two years old. I only notice a couple of missing buildings, and they have the Sam's Club they just built on the corner of Martin Luther King Jr. Blvd and Main St. (North and slightly East).

Re:Spot on (1)

Sergeant Pepper (1098225) | more than 6 years ago | (#20228915)

Wow, I've never actually looked at labs.google.com before. From this, I have come to the conclusion that they're involved in some rather useless stuff - see Google Music Treds [google.com] .

(As an aside, I have come to the conclusion that Google Talk's users have no taste in music - Avril Lavigne?!)

Re:Spot on (5, Informative)

FJR1300 Rider (888176) | more than 6 years ago | (#20229015)

Done? Well, hardly! Yahoo Maps are junk, full stop. Take a look at this map of Boadilla del Monte, Spain, where I live:

http://maps.yahoo.com/broadband#mvt=h&q1=calle+gre gorio+maranon%2C+boadilla+del+monte%2C+spain&trf=0 &lon=-3.892947&lat=40.406177&mag=2 [yahoo.com]

(Please zoom to street level. Btw is there anything in Yahoo Maps similar to Google's "Link to this Page"? Can't find it anywhere, it's hard to believe such a basic functionality is missing, and yet it's... done!)

Now the same spot in Google Maps:

http://maps.google.com/maps?f=q&hl=en&geocode=&q=b oadilla+del+monte,+spain&ie=UTF8&ll=40.404657,-3.8 94675&spn=0.012876,0.020514&t=h&z=16&om=1 [google.com]

Can you spot the differences? And please note that Google Maps is a couple of years outdated! Yahoo must be 5 years old, M50 ring road isn't even there!

http://maps.yahoo.com/broadband#mvt=h&q1=aeropuert o+de+madrid-barajas%2C+madrid%2C+spain&trf=0&lon=- 3.583539&lat=40.493698&mag=3 [yahoo.com]

Please zoom to street level. This is Barajas, Madrid's Airport. That big building site you see is T4, the new terminal, the one that has been opened since February 2006.

http://maps.google.com/maps?f=q&hl=en&geocode=&q=a venida+de+aragon,+madrid&sll=40.416706,-3.703269&s spn=0.205974,0.328217&ie=UTF8&ll=40.490843,-3.5920 79&spn=0.012859,0.020514&t=h&z=16&om=1 [google.com]

Similarly, Real Madrid's (David Beckham's former club) new training grounds:

http://maps.google.com/maps?f=q&hl=en&geocode=&q=a venida+de+aragon,+madrid&sll=40.416706,-3.703269&s spn=0.205974,0.328217&ie=UTF8&ll=40.478439,-3.6132 36&spn=0.012862,0.020514&t=h&z=16&om=1 [google.com]

Nowhere to be seen on Yahoo Maps.

This is the Cuatro Torres [wikipedia.org] (Four Towers) Business Area, named after the 4 skyscrapers that are being erected there for the past two years or so. Strangely enough, Yahoo still seems to think it's Real Madrid's old training grounds!

http://maps.yahoo.com/broadband#mvt=h&q1=calle+man uel+caldeiro%2C+madrid%2C+spain&trf=0&lon=-3.68568 8&lat=40.476579&mag=2 [yahoo.com]

Now contrast with Google Maps:

http://maps.google.com/maps?f=q&hl=en&geocode=&q=a venida+de+aragon,+madrid&sll=40.416706,-3.703269&s spn=0.205974,0.328217&ie=UTF8&ll=40.476929,-3.6868 68&spn=0.006431,0.010257&t=h&z=17&om=1 [google.com]

Seriously, Yahoo Maps is rubbish. And I'm not even talking about the ugly and unfriendly interface.

Re:Spot on (2, Interesting)

hibiki_r (649814) | more than 6 years ago | (#20229891)

As far as Spain is concerned, it's hard to argue that yahoo has way less info than google maps. If you thought things look bad in Madrid, try a smaller city, Like Oviedo: The detailed maps are not even there.

Re:Spot on (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#20229991)

Except maps are typically used as navigational aid. You can clearly see that Yahoo recognizes M50 as a road, it's right there on the map. The satellite images aren't Yahoo's or Google's, they're licensed from third parties. How is it for you on getting directions? Or do you just like to look at the pretty pictures?

Re:Spot on (2, Insightful)

jeevesbond (1066726) | more than 6 years ago | (#20229121)

Take a look at yahoo maps. It's ..... done. Those whole world is there.

It's done, in unbearably slow Flash. I can't use Yahoo maps at all, it's a PITArse! Agreed that Google should spend more time on finishing/maintaining products than creating new ones, but Yahoo's binary-cruft-o-maps are not a shining example the rest of the world should follow!

It's difficult to believe the article's weird supposition that Google's ultra-clean home page is somehow hurting them, that was one of the main reasons I--and many people I know--switched away from Yahoo! (that and Yahoo!'s paid search results), and I thought people hated change?!

Re:Spot on (5, Interesting)

fm6 (162816) | more than 6 years ago | (#20229151)

I've said it many times before, but maybe this time people will stop and think before dismissing me as a troll.

Google does not know how to produce mature applications. They only hire brilliant people (or people who are good at passing themselves as brilliant; and yes I do have specific individuals in mind) and they let people work pretty much without supervision. Plus, they have a rule that all developers must spend a fixed percentage of time on unassigned projects!

So basically, their developers never have to do anything they don't really want to do. I've worked in organizations that fostered this kind of working environment (though usually not intentionally) and here's what happens: developers spend all their time finding intellectually challenging work to do, and just ignore all the boring stuff. So you get lots of kewl new features, but nobody's squashing bugs or polishing the GUI, or doing any of the other boring chores you need to polish the rough edges off a product.

You mention Yahoo maps versus Google maps. For a long time, the technology behind Google maps was way superior to Yahoo's. In some ways, it still is. (Yahoo doesn't let you change your route with a simple drag.) But Yahoo has always been ahead of Google in the boring-but-necessary stuff, like providing simple drop-down lists of your memorized locations. Google didn't even have memorized locations for a long time, and when they finally implemented it, they used a weird keyword system that's a pain to use.

Google really needs to hire some relatively stupid plodders to go in and clean up stuff. Hey, I'm available!

Re:Spot on (1)

moderatorrater (1095745) | more than 6 years ago | (#20229223)

It's an interesting theory, but I've always found their applications to be acceptably mature, and they're hardly bug-ridden like you imply they would be. What I've seen is that they get an application to a level where they can leave it alone for a while and then just leave it alone.

Re:Spot on (1)

fm6 (162816) | more than 6 years ago | (#20229923)

Yeah, I'm sure Google developers have too much self respect not to let bugs go unfixed, or at least not the really glaring ones. But I've seen programmers skimp on their bug fixing because they had a kewl new feature they wanted to work on. And this with a deadline bearing down on them! Though in fact, to these guys, meeting deadlines wasn't a big priority.

At Google, do they even have deadlines? Not from what I can see.

By "acceptably mature" I suppose you mean "usable, and with no nasty glitches". Maybe you, as a technogeek can live with that. But if Google actually cares about not losing mindshare to Yahoo, "acceptably mature" is not enough.

Re:Spot on (1)

moderatorrater (1095745) | more than 6 years ago | (#20229187)

I've never seen the perfect mapping system; what works in Utah doesn't work in Colorado and vice versa.

Also, no offense, but I could hardly understand what you were saying.
"Those whole world is there" - mistakenly put "those" instead of "the"?
"They're waaaayy too slow actually actually finalize a product" - you've got a subject and an object but no verb.
"What....*what* is still beta???" - unless "*what*" is a program of google's, I have no idea what you're talking about.

Just wanted to let you know that I struggled understanding what you're saying and still don't know if I understood everything correctly.

Re:Spot on (1)

dctoastman (995251) | more than 6 years ago | (#20229731)

Except for 249 Corporate Dr. Houma, La. 70360 where it is still using a decade old map. You try driving around here with those directions, you will likely run into a building.

Perhaps... (3, Interesting)

ral315 (741081) | more than 6 years ago | (#20228559)

Perhaps the best move is to have some Google Blog entries on the main page. If done tactfully, they could easily inform users of new updates without becoming as bloated as Yahoo has.

Re:Perhaps... (2, Insightful)

dotpavan (829804) | more than 6 years ago | (#20228667)

new users just aren't seeing Google's new offerings--such as increased storage options, additions to Google Maps, and tweaks to Google Image Search--right in front of their faces like they do with other sites.,br>

has anyone ever seen Google advertise its arsenal of products? except for this spoof commercial [youtube.com] . Google's USP is that they have these details sneak in via various news items, and rest is left to the hype, and over zealous fans keep digging for minuscule details. Irony is that one of the largest ad agencies doesn't resort to (or believe in?) advertising (except for some adsense keywords)

Re:Perhaps... (1)

TheRaven64 (641858) | more than 6 years ago | (#20229379)

Actually, I've found this really irritating. It seems the worst indexed pages on the Internet are Google's own. Maybe they are frightened of being sued if they talk about their own services to the exclusion of others, but if you add site:google.com and it's still hard to find information, then something's wrong.

I personally like the homepage (5, Insightful)

poor_boi (548340) | more than 6 years ago | (#20228561)

I like the wild stab at blaming Google's "simplistic" homepage as being the cause of their lack of customer satisfaction. The quick-to-load, non-headache inducing simple Google homepage is one of the reasons that drew me in to Google, and is one of the reasons that keeps me coming back. But maybe I'm just a geek that way and other people want their homepages to look like a neon strip mall.

Re:I personally like the homepage (1)

ChefInnocent (667809) | more than 6 years ago | (#20228679)

That, and the "neon strip malls" look spammy. If I'm in the mood for ad-riddled garbage (i.e. I'm shopping for something), I visit Yahoo, else I visit Google (which I'll visit even if I'm shopping).

Re:I personally like the homepage (1)

LiquidCoooled (634315) | more than 6 years ago | (#20228739)

I changed my homepage from Yahoo last year when they updated themselves.
For a quick overview of news I now have myway [myway.com] though for search its crappy and I still use proper google.

Re:I personally like the homepage (1)

LWATCDR (28044) | more than 6 years ago | (#20228781)

I tend to use iGoogle as my homepage and I also have a my.yahoo homepage. I have to say that I like the my.yahoo homepage a little more but then I have very good ad blocking so Yahoo probably doesn't like me all that much.
What I want to know is does anyone actually use the Google homepage for searching? I have Google set as my default search engine in Firefox so I almost never go to www.google.com

Re:I personally like the homepage (1)

Mattintosh (758112) | more than 6 years ago | (#20228929)

I've never gotten into the habit of using the built-in search boxes in any browser, so, yes, someone (me) still uses the Google homepage for searching.

I also tend to memorize URL's and type them directly into the URL box in my browser rather than searching and clicking or using bookmarks. And there's a bonus: I never have to import bookmarks or sync them between browsers.

Re:I personally like the homepage (1)

fotbr (855184) | more than 6 years ago | (#20229203)

Big +1 on both from me.

I don't like browsers having a built in search box, I don't search from the URL box, and most of the time I know where I want to go, and just go there directly. When I want to search, I go to www.google.com.

Re:I personally like the homepage (1)

CastrTroy (595695) | more than 6 years ago | (#20229831)

I also use the web in this way. I have almost no bookmarks, as I have all the urls of the sites I want to visit memorized. It's faster to hit CTRL+T and type in the URL then it is to find something in my bookmarks. And while searching would be a little quicker using the built in search box, I don't find actually loading up google to slow me down that much. On a related note, does anybody else turn off the history function. I have never found a use for it. Unless you visit 5 pages a day, it gets way too huge to find anything. I think it should be implemented a little better, saving the path which you followed to get to a page. so, instead of seeing some random page in a list, I can see that the page is under the links I followed when I searched for "C++ Book Reviews" (as an example).

Re:I personally like the homepage (1)

marcello_dl (667940) | more than 6 years ago | (#20229337)

I totally agree, the pages one accesses often must be clean and fast. Google home has still things i didn't like (arial default font, failed to work as local page, and a look somewhat too anonymous). But that was easy to fix [imagevenue.com] . It was also online (but the page was against google guidelines in several ways) and is still kinda accessible through the library [archive.org]

Re:I personally like the homepage (1)

Jeek Elemental (976426) | more than 6 years ago | (#20228797)

Ill 2. that, simple no-fluff interface for powerful tech. Google and pirate bay (with adblock :) are my favorite site designs.

Re:I personally like the homepage (1)

RedHat Rocky (94208) | more than 6 years ago | (#20229483)

Yes, wild stab indeed, given that google HAS altered their homepage. And I'm starting to get annoyed about the extra crap.

If anything Google should ignore the temptation to weigh down the homepage.

Re:I personally like the homepage (1)

MobileTatsu-NJG (946591) | more than 6 years ago | (#20229859)

"But maybe I'm just a geek that way and other people want their homepages to look like a neon strip mall."

If you were a geek you'd never see the home page of your search engine.

Of course... (2, Interesting)

JesseL (107722) | more than 6 years ago | (#20228567)

I'm sure that far more people still use Google, and most of those people would be even less satisfied with Yahoo!.

Simplicity (4, Insightful)

bmw (115903) | more than 6 years ago | (#20228571)

The simplicity of their site and the fact that Google *hasn't* changed their front page to include the usual bloat is exactly what keeps some of us using it. I know that more users equals more money and maybe the masses want more crap on the main page (maybe they don't) but sometimes it may be better to worry about quality more than quantity. That's one of the things that has made Google so strong over the years. They haven't (yet) sacrificed their quality just to be mainstream and I think that has worked very well for them so far. The day that Google loses their simplicity on the main search page is the day I find an alternative.

Re:Simplicity (1)

PorkNutz (730601) | more than 6 years ago | (#20229719)

I agree. It's actually kinda funny that just yesterday my friend was telling how sick he is of Yahoo constantly changing their page.

O RLY? (1)

Duffy13 (1135411) | more than 6 years ago | (#20228579)

I always found it annoying when site's basic design is continually changing, especially since it usually accumulates into a cluster fuck of links, pictures, and menus. And yet you still can't find what you're looking for on the dam things.

Personally I enjoy my relatively simple personal Google homepage. But that might just be me.

hmm (1)

thatskinnyguy (1129515) | more than 6 years ago | (#20228583)

What are their metrics for customer satisfaction? Is it really quantitative or are they applying numbers to qualitative metrics just to get numbers?

I think my BS meter is going off. At least it has metrics that are rock solid!

Actually... (5, Interesting)

AKAImBatman (238306) | more than 6 years ago | (#20228597)

This is where Google's simplicity is apparently hurting it in the long-term, as new users just aren't seeing Google's new offerings--such as increased storage options, additions to Google Maps, and tweaks to Google Image Search--right in front of their faces like they do with other sites.

It's not their simplicity that's hurting them, it's that they've failed to follow through on their success. The search engine was an amazing tool, and GMail was absolutely wonderful. But after that they had quite a few missteps. Maps was initially less useful than, say, MapQuest due to poor directions. This was eventually improved upon, but now Google is fighting the first-impression syndrome. Similarly, Google Video failed to appeal to most users. Google eventually gave up and bought their competitor: YouTube. Which sent the message that Google Video was as much of a failure as everyone thought it was.

Then you've got increasing complaints about their AdSense and AdWords services. Various webmasters complaining that they were kicked out of the program for no discernible reason. AdWords advertisers who say that they're getting charged for links they didn't get. Etc.

It all adds up to an age old problem: It's hard to maintain the top position. All the eyeballs are focused on you, and if you don't deliver you're going to get heavily criticized for it.

Re:Actually... (2, Insightful)

FreeKill (1020271) | more than 6 years ago | (#20228931)

That's sort of exactly what I was going to say. I think Google is getting kind of a bad reputation for being "too good" for their customers. Especially when it comes to adwords/adsense. Take a look at sites like http://forums.digitalpoint.com/ [digitalpoint.com] and you can find literally thousands of people who were dumped by Google with nothing more then a lockout of their account and an ambiguous email. That kind of customer service will get you nowhere. Also, they have a brutal history with some of their apps when it comes to just dumping existing users. Their recent fiasco Google video subscribers (http://slashdot.org/article.pl?sid=07/08/11/12532 37 [slashdot.org] ) is a prime example of that.

Re:Actually... (1)

MushMouth (5650) | more than 6 years ago | (#20229047)

Their directions still tend to suck. What's worse is that they suck for routes that people at Google would take and get directions for. Look at where they send you if you go from 19th Ave San Francisco to Big Basin CA. They send you more than 10 miles up a 1.5 lane road filled with switchbacks (old La Honda) instead of putting you onto Skyline at 92 or at Sand Hill Road both of which are relatively straight and have at least 2 lanes (with passing lanes). You may save a mile or two but its much slower, and far more dangerous, also I'm sure the people who live on old La Honda love the fact that google is sending at least 20 cars a day who have no clue where they are up their tiny road.

Google Video (1)

Midnight Thunder (17205) | more than 6 years ago | (#20229115)

Google Video failed to appeal to most users. Google eventually gave up and bought their competitor: YouTube. Which sent the message that Google Video was as much of a failure as everyone thought it was.

Well, the other issue was how they screwed people who had purchased content off Google video. I don't whether is just goes against their 'do no evil' mandate or whether its shear incompetence, either way it just highlights what can end up happening with DRMed content. At least with a DVD you are free from this.

Re:Actually... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#20229339)

I liked the Google video more than Youtube. It was much easier to download and replay the clips from it.

Re:Actually... (1)

dyslexicbunny (940925) | more than 6 years ago | (#20229391)

I really like Google maps except for the fact that my street has problems in their software. The features are good enough and do what I need to but not having my street bugs the hell out of me. There's also no way to talk to them about it so I can let them know.

Here's the problem: I live on 'Center St NW' and this matters because there's another 'Center St' in the city. When you use NW, you end up being shown 'Northwest Dr NW'. But when you spell out Northwest, you end up at my address. Unfortunately if you save the location as your default, it ends up being saved as NW and results in nothing near where I live.

Now Google maps didn't used to have this problem with my address so something changed with Google. I checked Yahoo maps and Mapquest and they use the same data for their maps - NAVTEQ. But the can find my house on their maps and the NAVTEQ data isn't messed up (you can check theirs online). So the onus is on Google to fix it but I have no way to do so.

It's not a big enough of a negative to turn me away but it still pisses me off every time I use them.

Who doesn't like Maps? (1)

Mr. Underbridge (666784) | more than 6 years ago | (#20229795)

Maps was initially less useful than, say, MapQuest due to poor directions. This was eventually improved upon, but now Google is fighting the first-impression syndrome.

I think that might depend on your particular experience - for me, Maps was a godsend from day 1 because I've had nothing but trouble with Mapquest. Additionally, their UI blew Mapquest out of the water. Add in the satellite imagery, local search, customizeability, and I haven't used Mapquest in years.

Various webmasters complaining that they were kicked out of the program for no discernible reason.

Just like everybody in prison will tell you they were innocent. There's probably a handful of honest webmasters out there who really got screwed, but I think the vast majority were playing games. The problem with advertisers is probably more legitimate, but I've yet to hear a good solution to click fraud - Google is most certainly trying.

Google eventually gave up and bought their competitor: YouTube. Which sent the message that Google Video was as much of a failure as everyone thought it was.

Well...it did suck. ;) Google Video, for me, was their one total flop.

so tell me... (1)

jjeffries (17675) | more than 6 years ago | (#20228643)

What are we "consuming" when we visit one of these sites? It seems like the advertisers are the consumers and we, the page-viewers and click-throughers, are the product...

Re:so tell me... (1)

vigmeister (1112659) | more than 6 years ago | (#20228731)

More like:

Google ----content/ads ----> You
You ----sales----> Advertisers
Advertisers ----money----> Google

Fairly similar to the TV model where the shows still measure ratings through you not through their advertisers. 'Customer satisfaction' is probably not the best term for what these guys are measuring though.

Cheers!

What never heard of iGoogle? (1)

140Mandak262Jamuna (970587) | more than 6 years ago | (#20228697)

My daughter discovered this infernal thing called iGoogle, something exactly like a yahoo portal customized from her google/gmail account. Every time she forgets to log out, I am presented with that garish thing. I have to go and reset it to "classic" interface. Dont know if it is a google project or someone trying to crash Google's party. Like that thing seenonslash.com trying to live on the reflected glory of slashdot.

Re:What never heard of iGoogle? (1)

LMacG (118321) | more than 6 years ago | (#20228759)

> I have to go and reset it to "classic" interface

It's a single click, the link in the upper right corner. Hardly a long drawn out "reset" process.

It used to be called the Google "customized home page." The iGoogle name is, I agree, stupid.

Re:What never heard of iGoogle? (1)

lattyware (934246) | more than 6 years ago | (#20229091)

The name is stupid, but the tool is great, well, in some parts. I don't use any of their widgets, just lots of feeds for all the sites I visit. Now when I start up my browser, I get whether there is an update on any site I go to in seconds. Very useful. Frankly, It's great.

Re:What never heard of iGoogle? (1)

hax0r_this (1073148) | more than 6 years ago | (#20229775)

Agreed, I have feeds from Slashdot, xkcd and various news sites all on my google homepage, in addition to a sort of feed from my gmail inbox (it shows the 4 or 5 most recent messages I think). The layout remains relatively clean looking (it doesn't look like the vegas strip like yahoo), but yet there is enough neatly organized information on there to keep me relatively well informed as to what is going on in the world, whether it be a terrorist attack, my mothers latest gardening adventure, one of my servers catching fire, or Microsoft developing a new plan to enslave me.

In my household... (1)

bealzabobs_youruncle (971430) | more than 6 years ago | (#20228769)

I use Google for every Yahoo service out there (search, mail, new, chat, etc...) while my wife has stuck with Yahoo for mail, chat and news, but uses Google for even the most simple search for uncluttered and generally more useful results. Additionally, while Yahoo Mail is visually much improved, there (from what she has told me) has been an extra layer of clutter added that she despises and is getting ready to give Gmail a shot. So I guess it depends on who the respondents were in TFA, but there is an anecdotal rebuttal of the highest caliber.

I would be more apt to use Yahoo for some stuff on occasion, but just like MSN, entering that URL delivers an annoying array of flash ads and overbearing design.

Re:In my household... (1)

netspider01 (1024749) | more than 6 years ago | (#20229721)

Google has failed on a number of projects. Google Answers is no match to Yahoo Answers, and is already closed. GMail is good in its sleek interface, but its notorious for SPAM filtering and no RSS suppport, Yahoo totally win on this one. Google recently acquired a Email security company to improve their spam control. Google Finance? does it even exist? Google Products, really really bad compared with nextag.com and pricegrabber.com. Google Orkut, is no where except in India and another country. Google has to focus on improving their existing products instead of keep coming out new ones.

Re:In my household... (1)

carlivar (119811) | more than 6 years ago | (#20229871)

Google and Yahoo search results relevancy are neck-and-neck. There isn't much difference.

I am to only one (5, Insightful)

trjonescp (954259) | more than 6 years ago | (#20228775)

who immediately opened a new tab and brought up yahoo.com to see a cluttered page (although less so than it used to be) and a Flash advertisement and sat there scratching my head with a "Huh?" look on my face?

Re:I am to only one (1)

vidarh (309115) | more than 6 years ago | (#20229863)

I didn't, because I know that's not what most Yahoo users see. In fact, a huge percentage of the people who do go to Yahoo's homepage do so only to immediately click through to one of the other services (like mail etc.), and a huge part of their users will also go straight to those other services... Whenever Yahoo is discussed on Slashdot, the homepage comes up, completely ignoring the fact that the homepage is only one of a huge number of services, and many Yahoo users can go years without ever seeing the homepage.

Um, right. (1)

SCHecklerX (229973) | more than 6 years ago | (#20228867)

The comments here pretty much sums up user experience with Yahoo! lately:

http://yodel.yahoo.com/2006/11/28/anything-good-on -tonight/ [yahoo.com]

Yahoo maps used to be great, but I like google these days, so haven't gone back to see how Yahoo is anymore. The biggest win for Google's mapping service is the fact that other sites can use their APIs and database (mapmyride.com for example). Yahoo's movie listings are still ok, but if they go down the road they went with yahoo TV, there will be a mass exodus for that service too.

Yahoo is dead (at least to this user) if google ever does TV and Movie listings with the same useful, unobtrusive interface that they use for their other stuff.

Re:Um, right. (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#20229089)

for the record, if you type movie:zipcode (or location), the UI for movie listings is perfect, simple, and accurate.

Stupid conclusions (1)

swordgeek (112599) | more than 6 years ago | (#20228989)

"ACSI says that to the untrained eye, Google's home page today looks almost identical to the way it looked years ago. This is where Google's simplicity is apparently hurting it in the long-term, as new users just aren't seeing Google's new offerings..."

Typical market survey.

1) Say, "Hey, I wonder if..."
1) Ask some questions and see some results.
2) Draw conclusions from the results which support your initial premise.

Is Google's market share dropping? Well if the numbers are correct then then answer is yes. The WHY of it is a matter of conjecture, though. I suspect that far more than being 'hurt by simplicity,' Google is suffering because their search engine is no longer much better than the others. Yahoo has improved, and at the same time, Google has degraded. Too many of the top results for any given search are ads for a product (especially from Amazon), or stupid metareview sites like nextag or buy.com, that everyone despises.

I generally use alltheweb.com as my main search engine, and google as a backup. If Google wanted to get my attention back 100%, then they should FIX THE SEARCH ENGINE, so that the results are as good as they once were. Even better, let me set (via a cookie) which sites I never ever ever ever ever want to see results from again.

They don't need a fancier website, they need to improve their core business offering. Of course, ACSI would rather come up with marketing reasons.

Re:Stupid conclusions (1)

JeremyGNJ (1102465) | more than 6 years ago | (#20229319)

Dont rule out Live.com search. I know it's evil to say around here, but it has come a LONG way and sometimes gives me the best (most "trustworthy") results.

Re:Stupid conclusions (1)

carlivar (119811) | more than 6 years ago | (#20229959)

I generally use alltheweb.com as my main search engine

You realize this is Yahoo, right? Same results as search.yahoo.com.

Which front page? (1)

TemporalBeing (803363) | more than 6 years ago | (#20229001)

Google's home page today looks almost identical to the way it looked years ago. This is where Google's simplicity is apparently hurting it in the long-term, as new users just aren't seeing Google's new offerings--such as increased storage options, additions to Google Maps, and tweaks to Google Image Search--right in front of their faces like they do with other sites.
Which front page? This one [google.com] , or this one [google.com] ?

True, the second one hasn't really changed much - only a few extra clicky's for new stuff they've added. However, the first one is changes all the time - namely due to content changes (news, etc.) - and is completely customizable for those with a Google Account (gmail, google calendar, etc.).

And every so often, the first one comes up when you simply type in "www.google.com", though it is usually the second. You can still flip between them using the link in the upper right hand corner just to the left of "Sign in" - click on "iGoogle" to go to the first one, and "Classic Home" to revert back.

What Google needs... (2, Insightful)

Jugalator (259273) | more than 6 years ago | (#20229051)

What Google needs is not to change its clean search engine, but just provide a new service, maybe text linked to from the search engine place... Called something like "Google Center" which is more of a portal, or at least news page. I know their blogs announcing stuff like Google Earth updates or whatever, but I don't think a blog is efficient enough in format. The page could collate news from different major areas (search, Google Earth, Gmail, ...) along with having a "Misc" section where you have links to stories announcing other more minor things.

Just some one stop place where people can actually get an overview of not just their services [google.com] , but the news on their services.

Re:What Google needs... (1)

MightyMartian (840721) | more than 6 years ago | (#20229665)

You can set up your own Google homepage for that. I despise Yahoo. It's so f**king cluttered and annoying. What I hate even more is how the touchy-feely crowd might actually ruin a simple and functional interface so they can have some stupid newsticker that tells them when Britney Spears' latest boob-flashing incident occured.

Re:What Google needs... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#20229855)

Where might one find said news ticker?

I like it (1)

JustNiz (692889) | more than 6 years ago | (#20229053)

I really like Google's page simplicity. Its the main reason I use them.
I hate pages that agregate all sorts of redundant stuff and advertising when you're just looking for a search page.

Yahoo's spam problem? (1)

Fuzzlekits (909093) | more than 6 years ago | (#20229075)

I only have tenative ties to yahoo through a few newsgroups that use Yahoo (ick, I know) but all... yes, pretty much all of the spam I receive in mail, in IMs, and in 'friends list adds' are all from Yahoo sources. I know it's not technically their fault, but sometimes it's ridiculous. I fire up Pidgin and there's 5 messages, and then two or three newsgroups a week get hit with spam messages. I can pretty much tell because all of it has one handle I only used for a yahoo group. Frankly, I wish Yahoo would spend more time dealing with the garbage that's ruining their Groups instead of tinkering with their front page every week.

Re:Yahoo's spam problem? (1)

netspider01 (1024749) | more than 6 years ago | (#20229789)

Have you used GMail? All my GMail mailboxes are all fulled with spams, I wish I can put up some screen shots of my GMail box, over the years, it has been becoming totally unusable for me, and I have to switch back to Yahoo, which has far better spam filtering. That's probably why Google acquired Postini recently to improve its Email security.

How ironic, can't get to Yahoo home page (1)

CorbaTheGeek (1037074) | more than 6 years ago | (#20229213)

I'm timing out. Also when I go to their finance.yahoo.com page. my.yahoo.com seems to still be working tho'.

Its not true !!!!!! (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#20229253)

I Googled it... ;-)

Simplicity is Better (1)

cromar (1103585) | more than 6 years ago | (#20229553)

Google's home page today looks almost identical to the way it looked years ago

In my mind, that simplicity is a Good Thing(TM). When I want to search, I just want to enter a keyword; I don't want a bunch of crap I have no interest in presented to me.

I think both are good... (1)

deweycheetham (1124655) | more than 6 years ago | (#20229711)

I have been using both for years and don't really have any major problems, each has their stong suites. (But no real complaints.)

(ding down my Karma again, i think i just told the truth)

Maybe for Consumers.... (1)

w0lver (755034) | more than 6 years ago | (#20229761)

Try being a business customer and paying for directory inclusion, then want to cancel. Canceling via the site, removing for CC data from your profile, and sending a cancellation letter, still gets you an automatic renewal. So try to send an email that's on your Terms of Service, bounces... Try calling their various phone trees, no option for directory services. Try just hitting zero on the three phone numbers you can find, get transfered a half a dozen time sometimes to the same person. Get your credit card company to try can call with you? They get the same run around trying to talk to anyone from billing. Google it sometimes and see the dozens of stories similar to mine. So to summarize:
1) violate your own terms of service
2) provide no way to communicate
3) force credit card companies to chargeback
Priceless Customer Service

Yahoo = Satisfaction? LOL! (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#20229783)

I used to be a loyal user of their mail for over 7 years. Then one day last year they decide to wipe out those 7 years worth of e-mail for no reason, despite the fact that I logged in every week. I tried to get a direct number to their customer service, but they were useless. Their web forms were equally useless. I have since then discontinued all services with them and their affiliates (including pulling the plug on my AT&T phone line.)

Yahoo is useless, and I'll never ever go back. Gmail is infinitely better (and gets far less spam.) Too bad I can't ever get my lost e-mails back. :-( Good riddance Yahoo!

Ha, the "confirm you're not a script" image is "sinning". How fitting for such an evil company!

Maybe it is the games (1)

bomanbot (980297) | more than 6 years ago | (#20229947)

You know, Yahoo offers a boatload of casual online games, which are very popular. They also offer Fantasy Sports games (Fantasy Football, Basketball etc.), which also have a loyal and enthusiastic following, which are all services that Google does not offer.

All those are huge online-time sinks and could give Yahoo an edge, especially when it comes to "average" internet users (coincidentally, Fantasy Football is the reason why Yahoo still has a place in my bookmarks bar...).

YAHOO HELPED ME FIND A GF! (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#20229961)

google is like a useful site and all, but until i can google
for a date on a sat night, i will continue to find female
satisfaction with yahoo tools.

thanks!
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