Online Business Risks – Are we too dependant on Google?

This may be a controversial topic (and I hope this page gets indexed by Google)! However, I have the responsibility to write about this issue as a Make Money Online blogger because I have been sensing the risk of getting too dependent on Google when it comes to doing business online.

A lot of people believe that online business, in general, is a risk free and low investment get-rich-overnight option. Of course, I agree that in most cases it is a low investment business option but the chances of making it really big depends a great deal on certain factors and constraints most of which is enforced by Google.

Parameters that drive your online business success and risks involved

The following are some of the attributes that defines the success of your online business :-

#1 WWW Visibility

The visibility here means the search visibility. Unless you get good enough search traffic to your landing pages or blog, you may not be able to convert them into money. As a matter of fact, today most of the search traffic originates from Google and hence all the Search Engine Optimization tricks that you do is only towards impressing Google. I did not mean to say that SEO is bad – it can be considered as a campaign or propaganda that you anyway have to do for offline businesses as well. However, in most online cases it is biased and targeting Google alone.

#2 Monetization options

Most of the monetization (probably except email/social marketing) options available in the online business are highly linked to the page ranks and search ranks defined by Google. Be it paid reviews, text-link-ads or private ad sales, your advertisers will not pay you unless you have impressive page ranks in the books of Google.

And the leading PPC advertisement option – AdSense – is from Google and hence for many bloggers it’s like Google is the employer. Many of these AdSense subscribers, like my blogger friend Pradeep from the tech news blog, get banned from AdSense with no satisfactory explanation from the biggest search engine business on earth.

#3 Feed Subscription

Most of the blogs and websites use feed distribution services provided by Google Feedburner. Have you ever thought how life will be if this kind of free services discontinued? Would you like to miss your ‘3000 readers by Feedburner’ chicklet anytime?

#4 Online security

Most online business is vulnerable to hacking and phishing and hence your success depends on how good is your backup plan and risk mitigation.

#5 Social networks/media

Of late, the social media marketing is gathering momentum. Of course, Google’s own social network (Orkut) is not a big player here but Google can decide what sites to index or even whether to extend its advertising services to the competition. This may sound like extreme thinking but nothing impossible.

#6 Government policies

Of course, we know that the social networks and blogs do not have the same freedom and rights in all parts of the world. There are many countries that have banned several social networks and blog sites thereby putting those online entrepreneurs’ lives into misery.

#7 Email policies

If you are talking about Email marketing and campaigns your success will last only till the time somebody marks you a spammer and that gets picked by various Email filter software. With more and more open web patrolling (like OpenDNS) gathering momentum, the risk is increasing.

#8 Verifiability

When you go online, many times you get to deal with unverified partners/vendors. I had a bitter experience earlier this year when an advertiser would not pay for the paid reviews I wrote for him. The case is the same with many services that you might offer online as well.

Over to you…

Now my questions are:

Will your online business still survive even if the Google services go down? Can you think of any alternative monetization instruments for your blog even though there are no search visitors?? How sustainable is your online business in general???

(God save beach bum who used to make $237,000 from Laptop before the recession hit!)


  1. What would it look like for us to be less dependent on Google, with more competitive options? Would these various options all have their own proprietary systems and search strategies and audiences and be incompatible? Would we have to go to Google, Bing, Yahoo, or whatever for different kinds of search or audience? Or would they be build on some kind of common platform as they are now? But if they are on common platforms, how might another one (say Bing) differentiate itself from Google?

  2. Richael Neet :

    Though most monetization option is linked to Google, alternatives to it are still available. People have yet to explore other forms of money making, such as CPA marketing, where alternatives to Adwords/Google could also work towards profit.

  3. @Mike, My take would be to depend on various search engines for traffic, but to convert that you use multiple options (private ads, reviews, referral-affiliate links) than just big online advertisement companies’ products alone!

    @Richael, CPA is definitely the route along with own product reviews and private ads.

  4. Nikhil :

    It is not a good option to build your online business completely depend on Google.As a beginner it is best to use traffic from google (either Adwords or organic) to test your offers and landing pages.Once you get a winner,seek all other forms of traffic.

  5. bobit :

    yes, thesedays google dominating in earning pie
    per action models like not much worth


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