Thursday, December 6, 2007

Thomas Astuto
Webmaster - Public Affairs
Con Edison

1) Why did you need Google Custom Search Business Edition (CSBE)?
We needed to implement a search engine that would find all types of documents including HTML & PDF's. We also wanted to create an engine that was user friendly, and Google is the top rated search engine so what better engine to use then Google?

2) What technology, if any, did it replace and why?
It replaced a custom built engine using CGI that only showed the titles of the results. Now our search queries have spiked and users find it much easier to find the information they are looking for.

3) What benefits have you derived from using CSBE?
First and foremost the results that come back are detailed and have a summary. The search capability of PDF documents is great. And having the ability to tailor your search engines results using an XML annotation file has proven to be very useful to place certain pages in the top results for certain search phrases.

4) What features of CSBE do you appreciate most and why?
The CSBE engine itself is the best thing that could happen to webmasters, the engine is extremely powerful and easy to set up. There are so many great features like the XML annotations, included & excluded sites, and all the great webmaster tools like analytics on you search engine.

5) Are you using Google Analytics on your website?
Absolutely, this is the best breakdown I have ever seen. I have been a web developer for 10 years now, and I must say that compared to other products on the market like Web Trends, Google Analytics is so easy to measure your website results with an easy to read/navigate user interface. Every month I send a detailed report to my manager so he can see how certain content is being utilized and retrieved. And the ability to just click and save the results is also great.

6) What's been the overall impact of using Google CSBE on your website?
Using this powerful search engine has given our end users the ability to find the information they are looking for with a common user interface results page. We now boast in advertisements about our search capabilities on our site. And the price was very reasonable.

7) Do you have any advice you'd give others in implementing the Google CSBE for their company's use?
For the price, just give it a try and you will see the results for yourselves. Make sure you learn all about using the XML annotation file for custom results.