Wednesday, June 3, 2009

Breaking Up (with Google) Is Hard to Do

My name is Aaron Goldman and I'm a Googlaholic.

It's been nearly 24 hours since I last Googled anything.

I've been trying to get clean for about 6 days since I first received my preview code for Bing. And let's just say it hasn't been easy.

When I first decided to do a review of Bing, I thought the only way to give it a fair shot was to use it exclusively. Sure, Bing performed well against my first few queries but how would it hold up when I was in a pinch and desperate to find information, er... make a decision, quick?

Gord Hotchkiss and Danny Sullivan have written extensively about the Google Habit and how hard it is to break so I won't get into the psychology behind it. I'll just echo their sentiments and share my personal story...

Google has a hold on me. Over the past 6 days, I've found myself absent-mindedly navigating to the Google toolbar, typing a few keywords, and hitting enter before cursing myself and Binging it. I wonder if this is how smokers feel?

Heck, I even have a Firefox search box defaulted to Bing at the top right of my browser but my instinct is always to go left where I've come to know over the years that Google will be waiting for me.

I need a patch. Not something to give me my Google fix at low-levels throughout the day. I literally need a patch that I can use to cover up my Google toolbar so I know not to use it. Why not just disable it, you say? As a marketing professional with a huge stake in SEO, I need to see Page Rank info for sites I'm visiting. Note to self: Bing around to find other SEO toolbars.

Another thing I need to do is stay away from enablers. All those people who are constantly telling me to "Google it." And I probably need to give up my duties as a regular Search Insider contributor. In preparing this week's column I had to use Google a few times to find obscure articles and blog posts I needed to reference and came up short Binging them.

Hmm, looks like I've got the makings of a treatment plan here. OK, let me cut this post off and start working on my next one... "Breaking the Google Habit: A 12 Step Program." Stay tuned!

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