What is the second most important category to Google after its main search engine?
Hitwise says it’s image search.
So, don’t miss this announcement about Flickr photos getting integrated into Yahoo Image Search.
It’s surprising to me that Google continues to let Flickr run away with the metadata. What is the meta data? Well, Thomas Hawk, my photographic partner at PodTech, does a good job of explaining how the social features in Flickr give photos on Flickr more metadata which makes building a better image search possible.
Personally I’ve done a lot of testing of image search cause my Microsoft friends keep telling me “look at us, look at us” and I want to believe that Microsoft has its act together somewhere. But Flickr’s image search always pulls back better images for me than Ask, Live, or Google’s image search, for that matter.
The one reason I think Google hasn’t bought more companies like Photobucket, Zooomr, Piczo, etc. is that the Picasa team at Google thinks they can solve it some other way. I don’t believe them and they should reevaluate their strategy of not investing in a real social image service. Their tactic of letting people add tags to images isn’t working as well as Flickr (and won’t).
Anyway, Thomas Hawk does a variety of searches on a variety of image search engines to demonstrate that Yahoo is running away from the pack in this area.
What do you think? Are you going to change where you search for images because of this new announcement?