It’s very rare for a new business to be introduced and immediately dominate its competitors. It usually takes years, sometimes even decades to achieve; but it is not unheard of.
Take Google for example. When it came online in 1998 it shot to the top as the world’s most popular search engine. Within months of becoming a company, PC Magazine reported that Google “has an uncanny knack for returning extremely relevant results” and recognized them as the search engine of choice in the Top 100 Web Sites for 1998.
At the time all the other search engines like Excite and Alta Vista were focused on “stickiness” or getting users to stay on their site for long periods of time. They reasoned that this was the way to get more people to view the ad’s they served up and click on them, thus increasing their revenue. This made them focus on growing ad revenue instead of improving search.
What Google did was quite contrary to that philosophy. Their goal was to return extremely relevant search results as fast as possible, getting users to click away from their site fairly quickly. The founders behind Google thought if they could do their job well, then users would be more likely to return to their site and use it over and over. And they were right. Almost overnight millions of web users abandoned their favorite search engines in favor of using Google exclusively in the late 90’s.
In retrospect it’s not surprising that Google found success not long after launching. They simply used a powerful business technique to dominate their competitors. They did one thing and they did it better than everyone else. By returning results that were more relevant to what the user was searching for. Google essentially blew everyone else out of the water.
Google made their display page simple, a white background with black text. It put the most relevant results at the top and centered them while moving everything else to the sides. By doing it this way they made their business better than all of their competitors. Very quickly users saw them as not just a search engine, but a reliable source for information.
Any business launching today should adopt the same business strategy Google used–do one thing and do it better than everyone else. Figure out what your business can do for people and then work hard to do it better than all of your competitors.
CREDIT: Ethan Warrick