Many of us SEO experts have also worked in companies striving to create well leveraged Enterprise Search applications behind a corporations firewall. Those that have, know the challenges that one will face, but the number 1 comment any Enterprise Search expert gets is “Why don’t we just use google?”
Now, in any corporation there are multitudes of reasons like poor content, bad repositories, non-archiving policies, and the like. However the core of the conversation, I feel, still comes back to SEO. Employees inside of a company simply don’t see what’s really done to make Google work from a website creation/management/seo/sem perspective. lets take some real world “Best Practices” and look in a little depth…
1. Keep the content up to date: Most companies, and normal employees have little to know archiving/review process implemented internally. But their web-site owners certainly do. They are usually riddled with blogs, forums, customer testimonials, this years newest inventions, press releases etc., and usually the old stuff is removed to promote the latest and greatest! Winner – Google
2. Keep the names meaningful: Sure all of us think when we load a document into some CMS system in a company that our name is great. It means what the file is about. But seriously… “billingSomeDepartmentName_xx111232.xls” what does that mean? General users don’t understand that websites, and SEO experts are in the game of constantly following conventions to make the names, and even url’s meaningful to a search engine. THis way EVERYONE can find them! Winner = Google
3. Keep the content Meaningful, and relevant: Inside of a company, there are usually thousands of publishers. All of which think that their one small section in the corporate portal is the most important, most relevant thing to everyone else. On a company’s website there is usually a small, controlled group of people who follow a single strategy to deliver the most up to date, and relevant information. Winner = Google
So even just looking at these three attributes, is it really surprising that Google search “Just Works”?