Google Links Up With Answers.com
Since its debut earlier this month, Answers.com has garnered rave reviews across the Web and, apparently, Google agrees. The search giant has begun redirecting its "definition" link that appears atop search results to the reference service, which offers quick answers to questions without requiring users to sort through a myriad of Web pages.
Built by GuruNet, Answers.com is a Web offshoot of the company's desktop application that has been retired after an unsuccessful attempt at targeting corporate users. GuruNet's new strategy is to ride the growing search wave by offering a complementary reference tool - an approach that's already beginning to work.
In addition to Google, Answers.com has found its way into Amazon's A9.com search engine, and hopes more search and media sites will follow suit.
"We don't perceive ourselves as competing against the search engines. They do what they do -- indexing as much of the web as they can -- very well," Jay Bailey, Director of Communications at GuruNet told BetaNews. "But while they are busy with the 'shotgun approach', providing every available page for you to sort through in your hunt for information, Answers.com gives you the answer."
The company says answers are compiled from over 100 encyclopedias, dictionaries, glossaries, and atlases. Some information sources are free, but the majority of content is licensed by GuruNet.
Although GuruNet has not announced a contractual relationship with Google, the company says it is pleased by the added exposure for Answers.com.
"We are delighted to see that Google views us as a valuable resource – a way to offer clear, concise "answers" as an option when that is what their users are looking for," said GuruNet's Bailey. "We truly hope that they continue to do so, and that we can, in turn, continue to merit the exposure by continuing to provide useful, reliable, fact-based answers."
Despite its new focus on the Web, GuruNet is offering a downloadable package to go with Answers.com. Currently in beta, 1-Click Answers provides tools for looking up words, including an IE Toolbar on Windows.