This is big news.
Google and Twitter came to an agreement this week to include up to date tweets within mobile search results. This means if you search for Peyton Manning, you will see tweets about him in the search results. It also works with #hashtags, which can be very useful. The tweets are in a box, and you scroll horizontally through them. You can follow links within the tweets, and tapping the headline takes you to the tweeter’s profile.
Right now the searches are kind of hit and miss. The tweet box showed up for Manning, but not the Broncos. Or Radiohead. Or SEO. They did show up for #seo though. Here is a comparison between a search for Marvel vs #marvel, less than a minute apart:
I didn’t do an exhaustive study, but from my experiments, it seems that hashtag searches show the “Popular on Twitter” box, while standard searches show something like “Marvel Entertainment | Twitter.” The results sometimes matched, but not always.
Okay, now that we got the what out of the way, let’s talk about the why.
The more cynical among you might be thinking something like “mega corporations are taking over the world!”
There was a time when I might have joined you in that line of thought, but I’ve since
Google wants to give people up to date, useful and relevant information. But it takes a while to crawl, parse, index and serve websites. With tweets in their arsenal they can deliver the latest trends instantly! Twitter’s benefit is obvious: get more users more engaged.