Did Google's Marissa Mayer Get Promoted or Demoted?

Oct 13, 2010 • 8:24 am | comments (4) by twitter Google+ | Filed Under Other Google Topics

Bloomberg broke the news that one of the most respected and visible Google personalities, Marissa Mayer, is switching roles in the company. She will no longer be Google's vice president of search products, instead she is moving into overseeing location and local services.

The article, as do others, claim how important those areas are in Google's future. And thus, it is a promotion. In addition, Marissa is joining Google's operating committee, the company's senior most management group.

But other's believe the move was a step down. Claiming Marissa has failed to compete with Bing on the user interface side and to innovate at a faster pass, on the UI side, compared to Bing. Rational? Today is a day full of Bing announcements.

Personally, I am not sure what to believe. I know mobile/local is really an incredibly important part of search. Most of the growth in search over the next years will be via that avenue. But I am a bit surprised to see Marissa not lead up both local and web desktop. I mean, I can see her doing both.

A WebmasterWorld thread has Brett Tabke's comments, Brett is the founder of WebmasterWorld and PubCon. Brett said:

Well gosh - the new serps didn't go over very good with the public. Google instant was rolled out to much fanfare, and quickly ignored by everyone. Essentially every UI change in the last year has been viewed as 'bing'alike. It was clearly time for a major shake up at the UI dept of Google. Lets just hope, Udi believes in stability above all else. If it aint broke - don't fix it.

The real interesting thing to me is how hard Google PR is trying to spin this as a promotion. Ya, that's the ticket. She moves from the look-n-feel director of the top webpage in the world, to a bean counter shuffling map checkins. This does not seem like a promotion to me. She got set down...

So he clearly thinks this was a demotion of some sorts.

But I do not agree with the "if it aint broke - don't fix it" attitude. If you don't innovate, you will die, in my opinion. Especially in this business.

Anyway, what do you think? Do you think Google demoted Mayer or promoted her?

Forum discussion at Sphinn and WebmasterWorld.

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10/13/2010 01:03 pm

Well... I'll call it a promotion. Mostly on the grounds that local search is so much more important globally. Here in South Africa nobody uses Bing... why? Because bing.co.za just isn't close to offering decent results. Google.co.za is by far the leading traffic generator (95%+ of search traffic). Personally I'll call localised search so much more important than general search or even UI. Trust me... there are horrible interfaces all over the web that still generate traffic. But hey, that's just my take on it.


10/13/2010 01:28 pm

Promoted. I've been watching server logs on one of my sites. At the beginning of the year, 1 in 61 people accessed it on a mobile device. Now it's 1 in 25 and steadily rising. Local and mobile just seem to go hand in hand so well that I would guess she's being set up to work on the Next Big Thing.

Taiyo Johnson

10/13/2010 10:19 pm

What's Bing? ;-) Seems to me that only people at Bloomberg would be using Bing enough to know that Google's new interface was "BingAlike." And if it is, who cares? Now, which is more important Global or Local Search, that seems like a key question. From everything I see, it seems most likely that local search is where all the new growth and money is. Also that is where small business people are dying for Google to do something great. And it is where Google has largely dropped the bar (and drop entire towns for months off of Google Maps). (Read Mike Blumenthal or David Mihm) I don't know (or care)if it is a promotion, but it is going to be a challenge. Promotion/Demotion? Everything is what you make it

Wade Cockfield

10/14/2010 09:05 am

I'll just wait and see what she can do for Google in her new position.

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