Search’s dominant player, Google, has been resting on an increasingly ad-ridden and SEO page rank model for far too long—and now sees the seas of disruption bubbling by OpenAI’s ChatGPT, fuelled by Microsoft's gargantuan investment. AI search (it seems) has arrived through the familiar modality of a chat window, however, in the rush to chatbot everything, the team and I believe a fundamental reality about how people find and explore information has been ignored. With this flaw in mind, we have been brewing an ambitious project that aims to transform the way people search.
Our approach for this project was like any other client engagement—by diving deep into customer and use case development, carefully examining search and information gathering behaviours, the search market ecosystem and infrastructure, and its related technical domains. This comprehensive analysis identified key interventions and opportunities, paving the way for a fresh and disruptive take on online search—and pinpointing areas where our product can make a massive impact for users.
In parallel, we‘ve been designing, experimenting, and building proof-of-concepts that demonstrate our unique take on search and information gathering activities. Our team has found a way to integrate generative AI that feels like part of a broader cohesive search experience, instead of something simply bolted on to legacy page-rank text-field.