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Search: The Hidden Killer App

January 14, 2014

 By Mae Kowalke, TMCnet Contributor

Young entrepreneurs are busy creating the latest killer app as I write this. There are many competitors vying for this space, and many new ideas that may or may not be great.

Many of these great ideas are complex or even silly, however, and many start by creating needs that we did not have before. All that is fun, I’ll admit—I love finding new apps and new solutions as a tech lover. But really they are making my life more complex in many cases. And really all are groping to reproduce a killer app that basically emerged in the late 1990s that is so powerful that it still is being used as the basis of so many other innovations: Search.

Specifically, Google (News - Alert) search.

The tech giant was not the first to offer search functionality, but it was the one that got it right. It has been so good at search, many of us have forgotten what it was like prior to Google. It also still builds most of its other business around this initial core innovation because Google search is so powerful and so profound.

image via shutterstock

Search makes life easier, not more complex. It doesn’t demand that we do anything new, either; it scratches an existing itch, namely the ability to find things we need for our work and our home lives.

Google search has made the world so much easier, it covers up much of the complexity that other killer apps are bringing to the world.

And while businesses are always looking for an edge, and therefore exploring new killer apps and services, they would be wise to first fully leverage this most important of new inventions.

Office search, for instance.

Currently, most firms have business data scattered across many different systems. They have email, Word documents, CRM systems, paper documents, and probably several other types of data. As it stands, they only can leverage Google search for some of it.

What most businesses need to do is fully integrate their information so all business data can be searched and tied together. This makes it easier to find important data, and it makes it easier to find trends.

Fully utilizing search is relatively easy, too—it just takes moving all data to a digital format and making it accessible to search. Using cloud storage is one component, and the second one is making sure that incoming documents all go to this online repository. With services such as FaxSIPit’s fax-over-IP, even the fax can go digital and therefore be searched.

So while many businesses look for the latest edge, really there’s a lot of low-hanging fruit still left on the table. Google search is one of the biggest inventions in the past few decades, and we’re still not fully taking advantage of it even if we have already started to forget what came before.


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