Google Finance Launches & Japan Beats Cuba
Spend a good 12 hours away from the Internet and you’ll find the world can change in the blink of an eye. Well, not the entire globe but perhaps the worlds of search engines and baseball. I just logged on to find that Japan has beat Cuba to take home the World Baseball Classic Title and that Google Finance has launched.
I’m sure that I can catch up with the Japan win tonight on television as I’d really like to see the footage of Japanese Manager and World’s home run champion; Oh Sadaharu (who manages the Fukuoka Softbank Hawks – Softbank owns Yahoo Japan) walking out on the field with Hank Aaron (there are 1,623 home runs between the two men). Like Japan winning the WBC, I can also say that I’m not a bit surprised that Google Finance has finally launched, being that Search Engine Journal broke the news on Google Finance when we saw their queries and pages sending test traffic in our referral logs.
Just like the USA Baseball team stocked their rotation with 40 year olds, Google Finance offers the same standard tools we are used to seeing in Internet Finance channels : Charts, News and Discussions (via Google Groups) info.
Google News Integration
Google does however have some fresh blood in their Google Finance lineup with Google News stories integrated into the earnings chart accompanied by blog coverage. The Google News integration is quite useful as when looking into share value changes for GOOG we can see how reactive the stock is to Google publicity and media coverage.
We see that when the CNET “Google wins a court battle” coverage of a copyright suit went to press, the stock dipped almost 5 points. Then, Google stock began to recover after “Schmidt’s Google Sees China Internet Topping US” was printed by Forbes.
The Google News coverage integration does not only champion and hopefully bring potential monetization to the Google News service, but it also serves as a tangible and relevant timeline for those doing background information on peaks and dips in stock value.
Just like Google has done with Finance and its Nike partnered Joga.com community, it would be nice to see Google tackle more niche targeted Google News spinoffs like Sports or Gossip – perfect for the personalized Google Home Pages.
Blog Posts in Google Finance
Besides giving Google News techs a sandbox for experimenting new ways to use the service in everyday financial coverage, Google Finance also acts as a new way to monitor relevant blogs about a stock.
Given the hot stove corner that Yahoo Finance has on the market, Om Malik says it best with this line “Given how entrenched Yahoo Finance is in people’s lives, Google cannot be incrementally better,“; Google does have a bit of a jump on Yahoo in the blog integration department. We all should know by now that blogs have the tendency to spread news (or lies) about stocks much quicker than traditional online news channels can muster and Google Finance should get kudos where kudos is due for their blog coverage integration.
Thus far the blogs listed seem to be authority, with Steve Rubel and the Google Blog being cited for GOOG oriented blog coverage, and Google Finance (BETA) also gives the options to check the references of the blog story, by tracking the blogs indexed in Google Blog Search (BETA) which link to the blog post that is enjoying prime coverage – like these links to the Google Blog Writely acquisition announcement.
Google may want to take a page from Technorati however and improve the authority of their References or atleast list English language blogs for those clicking over from the English language Google Finance.
Google Finance Search
Ouch, in my humble opinion I’d have to say that Google Finance strikes out with a Golden Sombrero with its search engine option. Sure, searching for company names or stock symbols brings relevant information.
But on the contrary to Yahoo Finance, Google Finance actually suggests that its users search for subjects for finding relevant stocks – and even uses a “I’m Feeling Lucky” style tool for taking the user to what Google feels is the most relevant stock to the search query. Well Google, you asked for it – here are the results of some obvious tests.
* Search Engine : General Electric Company (obviously Engine throws this off)
* Local Search : Microsoft (hmmm… what exactly are you saying GOOG?)
* Paid Search : Interchange (owners of Local.com & ePilot)
* Ethanol : Pacific Ethanol (ok, relevant)
* Contextual Advertising : 121Media.com (what?) – Blog Posts show a bunch of Spam Blogs including ‘healht spa uk’
* I did find some really cool results, like with the new Playstation 3 coming out if you decided to sink your money in Playstation oriented companies the results list Sony, Logitech, Electronic Arts and Midway Games.
* Likewise, a search for “DVD-R” lists Sony, Matsushita and Hitachi.
Rounding off the experiment, if your last name is Rose and you wanted to put your savings on the line by betting on the World Baseball Classic today and did a search for ‘World Baseball Classic‘ on Google Finance, the result is ATARI (none of these words are actually on the Atari, Inc. profile)- which was named after the term Atari (å½“ãŸã‚Š) from the Japanese boardgame game of Go – now that is a relevant and accurate prediction!