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What If There Was No Google?

by PotPieGirl on August 22, 2011 · 23 comments

jennifer ledbetter

Would It Change The Way You Work Online?

What if tomorrow morning you woke up to find that Google closed. Yep, imagine the whole entire monstrosity that is The Big G was no longer online. Through, done, finished. Good-bye Google. What would you do? Would you still work online? Would you still make your sites the same way? Would you still type your posts the same way? Would you survive?

What if…

Imagine this…

You are a purple widget manufacturer. You make GREAT purple widgets. EVERYONE wants one (or ten) of your special purple widgets.

Lo’ and behold, WalMart wants to stock your widgets and put them front and center in every single store they have.

Think you’d make some money? You bet you would!

It would be great, wouldn’t it? To have one of the biggest retail locations in the world stock YOUR purple widget and put them right where everyone can find them.

You’d be cranking out purple widgets faster than you-know-what. You’d be happily hiring more and more folks to help you get those purple widgets out to WalMart.

You’d probably change all your packaging to suit WalMart’s requirements. You’d probably change all your advertising to only say “Our Awesome Purple Widgets Are At Your Local WalMart!

You wouldn’t waste a moment making packaging that could suit another store – nor would you worry about advertising OTHER places consumers could find your widgets.

You wouldn’t even worry about serving other customers because you were made in the shade with WalMart and all THEIR customers.

You’d be in hog-heaven because WalMart was your cash cow.

Why in the world would you worry about any other potential retailer to see your widgets – you had it made!

(yes, I absolutely have to use types of animals in that statement above….you’ll see why in a moment)

The One Day….

Then, one day, out of the blue…. Someone at WalMart decides they do not want to stock your purple widgets anymore.

No telling WHO made this decision, but we feel pretty darn sure it was that new guy – Mr Panda. That Panda guy was known for making these crazy decisions about what is “quality” for their WalMart stores every month!

And you, my dear purple widget owner, just got tagged as “bad quality”.

They won’t tell you WHY they tagged you as not worthy of being in their stores anymore. They simply tell you to improve your quality and toss you out.

Your purple widgets are now nowhere to be found in any WalMart anywhere in the world. Overnight, it was all over.

Your purple widgets were out – POOF! Gone.

Your entire business, from packaging and staffing, to advertising was all set up to please WalMart.

Now what?

What will you do now that there is no WalMart to bring you sales?

Hmmmmm… guess you open an online store and work your entire business around GOOGLE giving you the exposure that WalMart once did?

My Point To All This…

This is EXACTLY how I see so many site owners running their business. They rely completely (or mostly) on Google to send them leads and customers.

And Google doesn’t even take a cut of your sales!

It’s a nice thing – while it lasts. Free traffic coming to your online store… money being made with your great rankings from Google putting your site front and center.

But what happens when they decide to NOT rank your site well anymore?

What happens if they completely REMOVE your site from THEIR “store” (the Google index)??

Can you survive without that Google traffic?

Could you survive if there was suddenly no more Google?

If you knew BEFORE you started your site that Google may not always love your web pages-
would you do things differently?

What would you DO differently to be sure the exposure of your product was diverse and didn’t rely on ONE source to bring you traffic?

Would you work harder on your content. Not harder as in “better optimized”, but better in the sense that PEOPLE like it better?

Would you get out there on the ‘net and form relationships? Talk via comments to other related site owners in a genuine, thoughtful way?

I am a BIG time niche marketer. I love it. I try to create sites that a) Google will like enough to place my pages front and center for my target consumers…and b) that have content the consumers will like when they get there to my web pages.

However, I don’t build a following for those sites. Heck, many sites I don’t even build a LIST for (slap my hand, that makes me a bad, bad marketer…lol!)

But here’s the thing – Google is a traffic SOURCE. They are not the ONLY traffic source. Even I forget that at times.

Niche marketing is great. Target some phrases, put some good content up, and enjoy the free traffic and resulting earnings from Google.

And it’s all free…and takes very little effort when it’s done well AND Google doesn’t hate on you.

But what if there WASN’T a Google?

Would we all be better… better marketers…better site owners… just BETTER, if we stopped worrying about Google?

What do you think?


Chris August 22, 2011 at 6:38 am

Imagine there’s no Google. It’s easy if you try. :)

PotPieGirl August 31, 2011 at 3:55 pm

LOL! I didn’t think of that – but now it’s stuck in my head!

Adnan September 1, 2011 at 5:45 am

Nothing to link, or rank for. Internet is now alive.

subliminal subotnik August 22, 2011 at 3:17 pm

;) quality content is always the best solution.

go ahead jennifer. stick with your idols !

google is big, maybe the biggest … yes.

but the world has place for lots of others to.
there are still other corps, like yahoo and bimg to name the biggest.

and god old altavista is although still alive!

my own site (metioned above) is a nonSEO site … i do not invest any work in it , just sometimes if i am realy bored, i change litle things…

my work goes into my custoomers sites.

i teach them relying on quality content ;) and that content all the searchcompanys like a lot ;) not only google.

sun&fun to all ya honest marketiers out there

subliminal subotnik

Shane August 22, 2011 at 3:20 pm

Sometimes I wish there wasn’t a Google :) I go bonkers every time they make a change (especially when it comes to Google Product Search). At this point, I honestly don’t even know how to optimize sites for Yahoo and Bing (besides good keywords and content). The universe revolves around the Big G, and like countless others I’m trapped by the massive pull of their gravity.

Candice August 22, 2011 at 3:28 pm

Thank you for the reality check……………………reminds us to never put all our eggs in one basket:-)

Yes we need to remember Google is not the only one on the block. Yahoo, Bing etc………….

And yes I do agree………quality content is king.

Thanks for the post Jennifer!

subliminal subotnik August 22, 2011 at 3:32 pm

@ shane

i belive that google optimizations are god for short-time efforts, quality content and reasonable god keywords are a longterm story ;) longterm tactics need reliability and like their name suggests: are developing slowly but steady.

if a marketier does not expect to much, like getting rich over night ;) sells honest products and just does his god old handwork :) he can be a happy person for a long time.

i do think that is “THE master trick” to trick around that ugly google trapp.


subliminal subotnik

PS: eyfood for everyone to relax will be presentet to you@ peter-blau.de ;) have fun!

Ray August 22, 2011 at 3:37 pm

Interesting post. It’s sort of an eggs all in one basket idea, isn’t?

I definitely agree that we can’t just rely on Google and cower in fear of the decisions they make. I’ve seen a lot of people’s online business destroyed by changes in Google algos and there’s really no need for that.

It’s important to remember that there are other ways to get traffic to your sites, too. Wordpress, blogger, squidoo, etc, have lots of traffic and internal searches that you can make use of.

Thanks for the timely reminder!

Joseph Tohill August 22, 2011 at 8:45 pm

Well Jennifer, your post definitely did get me thinking. I’ve been working pretty hard on my IM projects recently, and have pretty much gone in with the mindset of only pleasing Google (which nowadays also means providing quality content for your site visitor). It seems that Google is just so powerful and controls so much of the market on searches that they are naturally the entity to gravitate towards in the IM world.

But I’m just wondering: What are some alternatives to relying exclusively on Google?

Put another way, could you develop a profitable online business WITHOUT relying Google (or even giving Google a second thought). I don’t think its possible, but perhaps I may stand corrected.

Vicki August 23, 2011 at 7:35 pm

I am one that got my site removed just recently from Google’s search. I am told by someone at Google that it is for apparently having no original content. It was a site made using amazOne to post products from amazon (hmmm no wonder the creator was selling amazOne). I know, I bad too, but I am gone. Totally gone even if you type the site name directly into Google’s search bar. Nadda. I’d love to know how to optimize for other search engines. I’m still in all the other search engines, relatively in the same spots as google, page 1 number 8 and 10 for my keywords. I hate depending on google. I will not do anything again that leaves me and my livlihood at their mercy.

Property Management Columbia SC August 24, 2011 at 3:58 pm

Sometimes I wish there WASN’T a Google out there… that way, all that traffic would go to the other search engines and we would only have to figure out how to get ranked on them.

The problem is, Google is still alive and still getting that traffic… even though Google recently dropped one of my websites from it’s first page. I have no idea why or how to get it back to the first page. Traffic has gone from 50 visits per day down to 2. Doesn’t figure!

Kad?n August 26, 2011 at 3:00 pm

Imagine there’s no Google. It’s easy if you try…

HP Printer Repair August 27, 2011 at 12:35 pm

If there is no Google, I think Yahoo would be the king and Bing would be the Queen. Anyhow I can’t live without google because I treat Google as my best friend. When I need to search for something I ask Google and wait a few secs and voila my question/queries have been answered!

- Vins

Rikke August 27, 2011 at 4:26 pm

Well… If there were no Google there would be some other giant company ruling the WWW. That’s just the way the world works!

Family Meal Planner August 29, 2011 at 9:49 am

Can’t even imagine the internet world without Google. If so i totally turn my attention in social media.

Taylor September 1, 2011 at 12:28 am


I don’t know if this post was inspired by my comments on, “100k BluePrint Warning – Read This!” But it’s extremely important that webmasters do NOT rely on Google. I don’t know how many times I have had a site getting 100′s of visitors a day only to be slammed by Google overnight.

On your other post, I commented the following,

“Google has the right to do whatever they want, whenever they want to. Google could deindex your site or ban your AdSense account without warning.

For years, I was relying solely on Google for my income. It had me worried sick.

These days, I am capturing subscribers, making Youtube videos, promoting my site on Facebook, going to be doing offline promotion, using Twitter, and using Google Search. For the income revenue, I am using Team Beach Body, Clickbank, Amazon, etc.

The more you diversify, the less you will be hit if a company decides to ban you. I recommend that you all diversify your traffic and income streams.”

This post that you have written restates the point that I was trying to make. This is NOT just advice either, folks. This is something you MUST do if you’re going to be successful with this business.

DeAnna Troupe, Small Business Training Lady September 1, 2011 at 2:25 am

Would I still survive without Google? It would be hard, but I think I could do it. I’d just be chained to my desktop again. Without google there would be no google docs either and that would be the real tragedy! LOL

hagar September 1, 2011 at 3:04 am

before there was google, there were a lot of search engines, and most of them were very “local” in their effects. You’d get wildly different search results, depending on your location that you typed from, for nearly any query. In addition, every one of them used a different algorithm (way of deciding what was important) to rank their results.
I used to have forms I designed, one for each major engine, that helped me tailor my request with each engine’s requirements. (Stuff like the “plus” sign might, or might not, need a space before and after it to make the function work). Add to that, that some engines were better with some kinds of queries- some did news searches better, some did programming searches better, etc.
Google did an awesome thing for search, and probly contributed directly to the success of the Internet. But they weren’t the first – and had they not risen, we’d probly have “search engine experts” like we have SEO now… with local, national and international division between what searches were possible.
Google does make it possible to rise farther and faster – and fall the same way. Multiple streams of traffic becomes more and more important, as Google gets increasingly phobic about internet marketers.
okay, sorry (begins stowing soapbox under his coat)

Charley Chris September 1, 2011 at 1:51 pm

Ha, Potpiegirl, it’s better not to think about it cos I can’t even imagine it happening and I pray it never happens. But if there were no google, there are other SEs. Social marketing and list building is a good way to get traffic without relying on search engines. It’s like saying, these are my lifetime customers.

With that said, those who adhere to this principle, “build a business not a money maker”, will escape any misfortunes if something like that happens.
What do you think?

Thomas September 2, 2011 at 3:03 pm

Luckily there IS a Google. Without Google my business would not be the same :-)

James Hussey September 7, 2011 at 5:28 am

That’s a great question, Jennifer, and something that search marketers/affiliates like me need to keep in mind. There’s a LOT of wisdom in building a site that’s properly SEO’d – and in niche sites, I think it’s way too easy to forget that people find blogs/sites through word of mouth via friends’ recommendations…

So after a couple of years being at this, I’m just now really investing in building lists and getting social media savvy (unreal opportunity lost without these two things), and I wish someone told me sooner to:

A) SEO the daylights out of your site…


B) Market it like there was no Google.

Not that I’ve not had great success with SEO, but you never know – and what could it hurt? More free traffic? It’s a win/win if you keep asking the question as you go along.

hazel September 12, 2011 at 10:40 am

I can’t live the idea of not having a google, if there’s no google well theres internet marketing and there are also no job for us.

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