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Google Instant Achieves Opt-Out Rate Of 2%

Near-universal adoption of search feature

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The concerns that Google Instant might make incorrect guesses, act as a flashy distraction, or focus too much on quantity versus quality (in relation to results) have apparently been dismissed.  A Google employee shared an impressive fact yesterday: the opt-out rate is under three percent.

Austin Carr wrote after an interview, "According to Ben Gomes, the lead engineer on Google Instant, the engine’s newest feature has had a remarkably small attrition rate: Roughly 98% of users are using Instant, leaving around just 2% of users who have opted out."

That represents a big PR win for Google.  Although it’s something of a cliche, it might honestly be difficult to get 98 percent of people to agree the sky’s blue on a clear day.  Consider that someone would want to use an adjective like "azure," and the occasional crazy might supply a term along the lines of "muskrat."

What’s more, Google Instant is making itself measurably useful.  Carr wrote, "Since launch, Google users are typing 5% fewer characters, and reaching results 10% faster than they were with traditional search.  On average, says Gomes, users are seeing results about 4 to 5 seconds quicker than they were before the company introduced Instant."

GoogleSo the risk Google took when tweaking its famous search engine has worked out for just about everyone.

Now it’s hard not to wonder whether other changes will follow under the company’s new CEO.

Google Instant Achieves Opt-Out Rate Of 2%


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  • Guest

    I like Google instant as I can see results faster, but please Google, take out the damn Google this and Google that inside the organic results.

  • Zhen

    98% are being forced to use Instant which is not the same. Nothing but PR campaign. Nobody knows how to opt-out from that thing, care about it or have the time to dance to google’s tune. Its common sense people just accepted what Google threw at them and they couldn’t do anything about it. I started using Bing more after instant so many other people. Put a big button next to the search box that reads “OPT OUT FROM GOOGLE INSTANT” and you’ll see 98% opt-in.

    • Doug Caverly

      There’s a small “Instant is on” button next to the search box, at least (it can be toggled to “off”).

    • http://www.greyolltwit.co.uk/ Grey Olltwit

      It would be like a supermarket giving every visitor a useless offer coupon as they enter. Something like 1 penny off, if you spend more that

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