So, Web portal operator Google launched its newest product, the Google Mini, which indexes and sifts through up to 50,000 files, to complement its Google Search Appliance, which searches 100,000 or more documents in a corporate intranet environment. Google says it aims to target small and medium businesses with cash-starved budgets by selling the Google Mini at only $4,995. Although, personally speaking, I feel that $5,000 is still a huge price (even though the Google Search Appliance sells for $30,000 or more) for a small company to spend on a piece of intranet hardware for finding documents. Google is really targeting medium-sized businesses with this offering.
Google Mini Product Manager Rajen Sheth says, in the posting on the Google Blog linked above, that: “Customers are happier (and more likely to buy something) when they can quickly find the right information on a website. Employees are more productive when they actually find what they need on their networks.” That’s very true and medium- and large-sized businesses will be well-served by a search appliance such as the Google Mini or GSA. However, Google’s share of the enterprise search market is miniscule, with less than 1% of Google’s multi-billion dollar annual revenues (about $50 million) attributed to sales of its search appliance for corporations and universities. Does it really stand a chance at catching Fast Search and Transfer and Verity, the number two and one ranked players in enterprise search, in this market?