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May 18, 2011
Open source and free tools available trough the internet are becoming popular nowadays. More and more people are getting familiar about the benefit of these tools. There is a significant increase of open source tools that make information available to a large number of professionals.
Google, like other leading internet companies, is offering a very large number of free tools. However, how do information users act with Google tools? In other words…
Are Information users aware of all theses tools and sources?
How are these tools utilized by Information users?
Which are the most useful with respect to Information Users?
These 3 questions motivated us to develop a survey with the aim of understanding more about this topic.
Google Toolsfor Competitive IntelligenceInsights from a Survey Ver sion ted 2012 pda ch Uby: MarMarch, 2012
Introduction and ObjectivesOpen source and free tools available trough the internet are becoming popular nowadays. Moreand more people are getting familiar about the benefit of these tools. There is a significantincrease of open source tools that make information available to a large number ofprofessionals.Google, like other leading internet companies, is offering a very large number of free tools.However, how do information users act with Google tools? In other words… Are Information users aware of all theses tools and sources? How are these tools utilized by Information users? Which are the most useful with respect to Information Users?These 3 questions motivated us to develop a survey with the aim of understanding more aboutthis topic.() see for instance: http://www.google.com/intl/en/options/ () We consider information user those practitioners and other professionals that utilizesinformation for their job and make better decisions. They can be end user or information providers as for instance consultants or competitive intelligencepractitioners.March 2012 © Miniera SL – www.miniera.es Page 2
Executive Summary• From April to June 2011 we launched a survey with the objective of understanding how 24 free Google tools were used by information users.• The survey (an on-line questionnaire) obtained 466 answers from a variety of companies world-wide.• Information users adopt mostly Google search engine for satisfying their needs. Indeed the Google search engine is the most important tool and is utilized as an information source. The results also show that information users concentrate their efforts on only a few tools.• Although Information users are aware of a great number of Google tools, there are a significant number of tools that have not been discovered yet. Other tools are simply not used at the time.() You can access to the survey trough the following link: http://www.surveymonkey.com/s/LNDTPDF.March 2012 © Miniera SL – www.miniera.es Page 3
Demographic Information: Country/RegionRespondents were mostly form West Europe (41.3%). The second largest group wereform Latin America (24.2%) and North America (21.1%). The following graph will showmore details of the regions.March 2012 © Miniera SL – www.miniera.es Page 4
Demographic Information: Sector/IndustryThe sample represented many industries, although consulting was the most dominant(17,4 %) and shows almost to be double that of other sectors/industries. The followinggraph shows the top 10 industries.March 2012 © Miniera SL – www.miniera.es Page 5
Demographic Information: Position/JobRespondents came from several job positions. There was a great variety of descriptionssuch as “Business Analyst”, “Librarian”, “Consultant”, “Marketing manager”,“Researcher and Analyst”, “Marketing Coordinator”, “CEO”,…However, after examining the descriptions we categorized them into 3 main groups: Information specialists, which includes Librarians and Analysts. Decision Makers, which includes Directors, Managers and CEOs. Consultants, which includes consultants, Teachers and professors.March 2012 © Miniera SL – www.miniera.es Page 6
Demographic Information: Years of ExperienceAlthough there are some young professionals in Competitive Intelligence (26,2% that have2 orless years of experience) compared to those that have more than 10, the sample is composed ofa wide range of experience in term of years dedicated to Information. The following graphshows greater detail.March 2012 © Miniera SL – www.miniera.es Page 7
How Google Tools are utilized? (1/2)The frequency of usage ofGoogle Tools vary quitesignificantly betweeninformation users. Themost common tool isGoogle Search engine,which most professionalsuse. By contrast, GoogleModerator is the leastused. The following graphshows the overall rankingof the different tools. Rating AverageMarch 2012 © Miniera SL – www.miniera.es Page 8
How Google Tools are utilized? (2/2)The following graphsoffer an alternative viewof the previous result. Itshows that there is animportant number oftools that are unknownto information userssuch as, GoogleSquared and Publicdata explorer.Moreover, some toolsare mostly never usedand are even unknown,such as Gtalk andGoogle ModeratorMarch 2012 © Miniera SL – www.miniera.es Page 9
Which is the most important Google Tool for CI?Google Search, Alert, News, Reader and Maps are the tools that are most importantout of a ranking of 5. However, Google Search is the tool that is ranked highest and isat least 3 times more important than any other tool.The least important 5 tools are Google: Squared, News Timeline , Public dataExplorer, Real Time, and Moderator.The next graph shows the relative positioning of the tools with respect to GoogleSearch tool compared with the degree of frequency used.March 2012 © Miniera SL – www.miniera.es Page 10
1st ranked –Top 5+5 Google Tools 73,2% of 350 information users consider Google Search their 1st 1.0 option Google Search 1.00 0.8 Google Alerts has been ranked almost Relative Importance Google News has as 2/3 less important been ranked as 2/3 0.3 to Google Search less important to Google Search Google Reader has Google Maps has been almost 3/4 Google Alerts (0.36) been ranked almost 0.4 less important to as 4/5 less important Google Search Google News (0.31) to Google Search Google Reader (0.25) 0.2 Google Maps (0.22) Gmail (0.20) Google Translation (0.18) You Tube (0.17) Google Scolars (0.14) Google Docs (0.12) 0.0 Never Rarely Sometimes Very Often Always FrequencyMarch 2012 © Miniera SL – www.miniera.es Page 11
ConclusionsThe survey shows that there are some common tools that information users utilize togather on-line information. However, there are several tools that are rarely used orunknown and could add significant value. We therefore conclude that informationusers: Utilize Google tools for ad-hoc projects/researches not only for searching, but also for gathering intelligence systematically (Alert, News, or Rss ) Do not make a periodic revision of the new tools that Google make available.March 2012 © Miniera SL – www.miniera.es Page 12
Limitation and Further StudiesSome points for thought: 1. The survey does not show how these tools are used during the day or week. Our question: Is there any workflow that information users apply to connect or make these tools more efficient? 2. We do not know if the utilization of Google tools are inversely related to CI software. We could speculate that those users that utilize less of these free tools have some Competitive Intelligence software in their firm. 3. Additionally we do not know how much time is spent and how much time is saved by using Google Tools.Further studies can help understand these open questions.March 2012 © Miniera SL – www.miniera.es Page 13
Contacts If you need more information, please contact: Alessandro Comai info [;-)] miniera.es Miniera SL Centre dEmpreses - Parc Tecnològic del Vallès 08290 Cerdanyola del Vallès (Barcelona), Spain Phone: +34.93.5820134 http://www.miniera.esMarch 2012 © Miniera SL – www.miniera.es Page 14