Eurekster is an interesting company in the general category of social search and discovery engines that provides a search widget (Swicki) for publishers to plant on their sites.
Swickis essentially refine search results over time based on the search behavior of past users of a given site. This makes search results more socially relevant over time, and within particular communities, than the broader algorithms that rule Google SERPs. Swickis have also been made portable so those created for various niches can be shared and planted on any site (see examples here).
Eurekster’s publisher community now stands at 25,000 and just over 100,000 Swickis have been built. These collectively see about 25 million searches per month and 9 million unique users. The Swicki also came out of beta last week after being there for a few years, and launched new features that ease the process of Swicki creation for publishers (more details here).
Also notable is that the Swicki was recently launched for video search, a growing area being explored by companies we’ve profiled here in the past, including Blinkx, ScanScout and Adap.tv. This happened through a partnership with Blinkx formed earlier this fall, about which we recently had the chance to catch up with Eurekster CEO Steven Marder.
“We were waiting for video to mature to a certain point,” said Marder. “One, where video feeds were good enough, and two, where we could parter with someone aggressive enough to do what we want to do. We think Blinkx is the most advanced in analyzing video for content and meaning.”
Blinkx does a good job finding and indexing video content online and this essentially pushes this content into the search results Eurekster is performing across all these vertical and niche publisher sites. This is also the next step in the meta search that Eurekster already performs with blog content, Web content, images, UGC, site search, etc.
Swickis also make full use of the buzz cloud, a discovery engine that is gaining user appeal in lots of search-based products. This partnership will now bring the buzz cloud concept and form factor to the nascent video search segment. The deal also brings social relevance to video search, given that online video is shared a great deal among users and is inherently social.
“There is so much video online. We have in our index something like 14 million hours of content. It’s very difficult to find what it is that you want to watch,” said Blinkx CEO Suranga Chandratillake in a video announcement of the deal. “Part of the challenge is being able to find it and make sense of what’s there. The second part is going to people whom you trust, [who] you know are experts, and who have an idea of what you might be interested in.”