By now it should be no surprise that Google is sunsetting its Google Site Search (GSS) product, in favor of its much more restrictive Custom Search Engine (CSE). In addition to forcing ads into your results (to no one’s benefit but Google’s), CSE has a much more limited feature set, proving that sometimes change can be bad.
Here are just 3 of the many limitations you’ll be stuck with if you settle for Google’s CSE:
They’re not just your results
When a visitor comes to your site, you want your search box to only show results from your website. With CSE you’ll be forced to display ads from the entire web universe in your results, taking away your visitors’ attention from your own content.
There are much fewer customization options with Google CSE – not just visually, but more importantly in the ability to control the way your content is displayed. While you can tweak little things like link colors, there isn’t much you can customize beyond that. The overall experience still looks and feels like Google, not your own. And if you have a new piece of content you want to promote, you have to wait until there are enough organic rankings for Google’s algorithm to show it anywhere close to where you want it.
The Google Help Center is a list of articles that assume you can do everything yourself. But what if you have a more specific implementation in mind that you aren’t sure if you can achieve on your own? If you aren’t a developer you might have some trouble.
If you aren’t worried yet, you should be. With free, you get what you pay for. Watch our latest 15-minute webcast recording to learn more about why you shouldn’t settle for CSE.