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Cuil’s Local Search Algorithm Clearly Broken

July 28th, 2008
13 Comments


For those of you who haven’t heard, there’s a new search engine on the block – Cuil – built by some former Googlers.  While the UI is intriguing, they clearly have a lot of work to do, particularly with local search.  For example this search is missing at least one extremely relevant listing.


Tags: Local Search

13 responses so far ↓

  • 1 Robert Carter // Jul 28, 2008 at 1:06 pm

    The UI looks nice but it’s hard to scan. I think that they can make improvements in the algorithm, but it seems that their design is what gives them their uniqueness–and it’s hard to read quickly!

  • 2 Andrew Shotland // Jul 28, 2008 at 1:09 pm

    I think there could be some nice ways to adapt this design to a local search.

  • 3 Saint Louis SEO // Jul 28, 2008 at 1:24 pm

    It definitely needs some lovin’, but it’s a decent start. I think its hard to scan only because we aren’t used to this sort of layout. Had the roles been reversed, we’d probably be complaining that the other layouts were had to read.

    Also, it may be worth mentioning that they may not have registrar status, which means they can’t necessarily add in things such as domain age, etc.

    A search for St Louis SEO on Google gives nice results (including yours truly) but the same search on cuil gives much different results, including a mesothelioma link. Hot!

    http://www.google.com/search?q=st+louis+seo
    http://www.cuil.com/search?q=st+louis+seo

    Nonetheless, it’ll be interesting to watch.

  • 4 Steve McStud // Jul 28, 2008 at 2:18 pm

    I think that search is extremely relevant :)

  • 5 Andrew Shotland // Jul 28, 2008 at 2:32 pm

    McStud, I think you may have mistaken the search query for “local search spammers”.

  • 6 Stever // Jul 28, 2008 at 3:21 pm

    I clearly see some relevance for that search :)

    Not sure where their pulling images from though? Cause the image in my listing does not exist on my site.

  • 7 Andrew Shotland // Jul 28, 2008 at 3:37 pm

    Which one is yours Stever?

  • 8 Frank // Jul 29, 2008 at 6:55 am

    Anyone know if there is any type of “submit my site” or sitemap concept that CUIL uses? So far I haven’t been impressed with the quality of the results.

  • 9 CUIL - No self respsect // Jul 29, 2008 at 7:12 am

    [...] a few articles about CUIL the “next great thing” in search engines.  As pointed out in this article by the Local SEO Guide, a lot of the searches you make with CUIL return some rather interesting [...]

  • 10 Tim J // Jul 29, 2008 at 2:49 pm

    I checked them out yesterday and really did not like it. Like the earlier poster said it was very hard to scan the page and see what interested you. That, and it gave me a few searches with zero results and it was something simple (http://www.cuil.com/search?q=business+cash+advance).

    I wish them luck but I’m not switching soon.

  • 11 Dax Brady Sheehan // Jul 31, 2008 at 9:59 am

    so cuils search results are a little rough right now for sure. But I think everyone in here could benefit a bit from asking the question why?

    …the errors and bad results were actually because unlike Google.com Cuil uses separate search appliances that specialize in a particular subcategory of results. There are servers that index sports; others are experts on medicine, colleges, etc. As these servers get overloaded, they dropped offline for some queries, and the machines left online return less-than-relevant results that then appear at the top of users’ pages. So basically if you search for “Ohio Buckeyes” you could get Cuil results that are all about “The Dark Knight.”

    All of that appears on my blog (plug). But really guys the non relevant search results both local and international could have a lot to do with servers falling off.

    side note: or nothing at all because the cuil team may have not deemed local search that important for launch (google didn’t).

  • 12 Andrew DeFilippis // Feb 25, 2009 at 10:56 am

    I am sticking with google. Cuil does not seem like it is going to take control of the search scene any time soon. They must not have very good crawling bots.

  • 13 Admiyn // Feb 27, 2010 at 12:55 am

    I think Cuil should offer some type of webmaster panel, just like google does

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