Posted by Tom Foremski - December 1, 2011
Google has been focusing search results on brand names as a quick and easy way of trying to distinguish between "quality" content and not. The idea behind this is that brands are owned by large organizations who produce the best, or at least the most reliable content around that brand keyword.
It also allows Google to essentially become the affiliate marketer for large brands because that's where they get most of their traffic. This is at the expense of smaller companies trying to make money online and who don't own major brands.
New services, such as Google Instant, make it easier to focus user searches on brands rather than the massive long tail of keywords that small marketers use to attract traffic. Google Instant can direct searchers to keyword terms they weren't going to type in but that Google knows it can make money from.
Aaron Wall, at SEOBook has produced an infographic that explains how Google has managed to chop the long tail off and concentrate on the thick, juicy, short tail of keywords, which is far more lucrative than what it can make from long tail keywords. (Embed code.)