Robert Scoble recently raised an interesting question on his blog: Which blog search is the best of them all? According to Scoble, Technorati seems to trump Google blog search because it includes information that Google Blog search does not, and offers more search results when you punch in a specific term.
Founder and CEO of Technorati, David Sifry has joined the discussion in the comments by offering several search examples (EMI Apple DRM, Kathy Sierra) which demonstrate that Technorati covers more blogs and pulls up more search results than Google Blog Search.
Other users in the discussions have suggested that Technorati index is slow and ignores certain blogs even though they are updated regularly. Dave Sifry is doing a commendable job by personally troubleshooting specific URLS that are not indexed in Technorati, so if your blog is not getting indexed properly.. you might want to head over to Scoble’s blog and give Dave some additional work.
Google’s Matt Cutts soon chimes in with his thoughts on the debate:
The great thing is that with a lot of engines competing, every engine is working hard and continues to get better. That’s better for every user… My personal advice would be to try several engines and see what you like. Every 2-3 months, try icerocket.com or sphere or t’rati or Google again, just to see which one works best for your search needs.
Technorati – Multiple Search Filters are Useful
I personally use both search engines because both of them have specific functions not found in each other. For example, Technorati allows you to filer your search results according to link authority. This allows you to find out what the big or popular blogs are saying about a specific topic.
Interestingly enough, I’ve noticed that if you don’t want spam in your search results, simply set the filter to either blogs with some authority or blogs with a lot of authority. This guarantees that your search results do not include splogs. The downside is that you’ll overlook all the blogs with low link counts.
By also offering the ability to sort results according to language means that you’ll be able to easily access the international blogosphere. For example, I usually use this function to find out what bloggers in other countries think about doshdosh.com, my personal blog which sees 50% of its readers from parts of Asia and Europe. While this filter seems to not have received much attention, I can anticipate its usefulness when you run a weblog or magazine and want to geo-target a specific reader market.
Google Blog Search also offers this function, but you’ll need an extra click to access the Advanced Blog Search, another click to select the language from the drop down menu and yet another click when you want to change the language. This slows down the browsing experience noticeably.
Google Blog Search – Alerts and The Ability to Designate Time
The strongest feature that Google Blog Search offers is the ability to sort material according to specific time frames. For instance, if I wanted to find fresh content from blogs, I would set the published time frame to either the last 12 hours or even the last hour depending on the topic. The combination of Google Alerts and feed subscription also makes keeping track of specific topics a very convenient process.
Like Matt said, the competition between search engines usually results in tangible benefits for all users. Competition and friendly rivalry also leads to the development of niche technologies unique to each search platform. Technorati and Google Blog search are good examples of this.
I’m actually glad Scoble brought up this topic because it is a catalyst for users to offer their feedback on what they would like to see from each blog search engine.
What do you think of Google Blog Search and Technorati? Do you favor either one over the other, and why?