AOL Employees Don’t Use AOL Search
AOL has been consistently 4th place in terms of search share, and Jason Calacanis thinks he knows why – because AOL sucks to search with. Calacanis, who joined AOL after the company bought his blog network, Weblogs Inc., slammed his parent company’s woeful search presentation on his weblog.
In response to criticism that he was too glowing about AOL’s products, Calacanis decided to up his street cred by pointing out where the company could improve.
“The way I look at it, the first step to sucking less is knowing you suck,” he commented on Jim Kukral’s ReveNews blog.
Besides AIM Triton’s sluggishness, Calacanis believes that AOL should work on its “screen real estate,” noting that to get to the Google-powered organic search results, the user has to scroll past an onslaught of promotional and sponsored links. The organic listings are nearly off the page.
The search result presentation is so “very, very bad,” according to Calacanis, that even AOL employees don’t use AOL search.
Calacanis goes on with a screenshot comparison of search results from Google, MSN, Yahoo! and AOL. The comparison shows that AOL organic results are over twice as far (300 pixels farther) down the page than Google’s results.
Calacanis concludes that AOL’s 4th place position is due to the engine’s “less generous” use of search real estate.