Google's search has gone real-time, but it's unclear whether the company can monetize its latest feature.
That takeaway was nestled in a research note from Piper Jaffray analyst Gene Munster. In a research note, Munster wrote:
Monetizing real-time search presents an interesting challenge. At our Global Internet Summit, real-time search company OneRiot talked about how it is impossible to predict what will be hot and to sell campaigns around those hot topics. To fully realize the advantages of real-time search, a new type of search monetization platform would likely be necessary, but we do not believe Google will move away from its current AdWords offering for search keyword buying in the near term.
That's an interesting point. Is it possible that real-time search moves too fast and is too unpredictable to monetize? In other words, you need a crystal ball to monetize a real-time stream of information. Munster also added that the addition of real-time search doesn't alter user habits much so the behavioral ad angle is weak.
Simply put, the Google and Bing race to real-time search was really about a feature race than dollars. And search does appear to becoming a horse race between Google and Bing. According to comScore, Google's November market share was steady at 65.6 percent, but Yahoo's share continued to fall. Bing's November market share was 10.3 percent, up from 8 percent in May. Yahoo's share was 17.5 percent, down from 20.1 percent in May.