Dave Mc Clure, having recently joined a new
(still stealth) startup, moderated a BOF about vertical search and the long tail, monetization strategies, etc.
Quite a bit of time was spent on the definition of vertical search, as compared to
"generic" search. My personal definition of vertical search is one where "semantic and intent are clearer" and results are more relevant: I log onto a travel site to search for airfares (intent) and I will provide a departure city, a destination, dates and other meta-data.
Because the context is better defined, then I expect results to be of higher quality. Other examples are local searches (context is local, result set is more relevant, etc.).
We did not have much time to talk about long tail in the vertical search context, but the need to be more relevant, especially when it comes to "local" information, will require the integration of "non-traditional" sources (leading to issues of authority and trust).
The presentation Dave used during the BOF is here. And Om just published a summary post on that very topic. I concur, vertical search is pretty hot these days. One of my (stealth) clients is helping search companies to substantially increase the quality of the data being crawled/extracted, and they are getting very busy these days.
NEWS: Dave's startup, SimplyHired, is now officially out of the closet, in beta. Good that we can talk about it in the open. Congratulations to the team!