Howard Lerman is the CEO and founder of Yext, an NYC-based global data management company. Lerman and Yext are a familiar face in the OMR cosmos as regular participants in OMR events, including Lerman’s appearance at the OMR Festival 2018. He’s also a recurring guest in the OMR Podcast with Philipp Westermeyer. In this episode, the pair of CEOs talk shop, catch up and take stock of the current search landscape, which companies are finding success despite corona and why it’s essential for companies to provide a search alternative to Google.
The future of search
Yext founder and CEO Lerman has made it his mission to revolutionize the way companies approach search—if the company’s current USD 2 billion-dollar valuation is any indication, the revolution is alive and well. When asked why it’s so essential for companies to optimize their websites for search, Lerman didn’t hesitate: “Google has transformed from a search site that provides answers to an ad platform that steers you,” says Lerman. “How do companies approach the fact that competitors are running ads on questions whose answers your own company provides?”
His answer is simple: Brands need to construct the customer journey on their pages effectively enough so that users have no need to go to Google for answers to their questions. “every customer journey begins with a single question,” the Yext CEO says. “Your top users will search for information about you right on your site, but if they do not find what they are looking for, then they’ll go to Google and find the competition.” Lerman says the current state of search for most companies is akin to Yahoo from 2005 instead of a Google-esque experience. In just a few short steps, Yext can implement an intra-website search that provides quality answers to every question.
To find out if you and your company has what it takes to stick it to Uncle Google, what Howard Lerman has to say about rumors of Apple’s own search engine and what the future holds for search on the whole, check out the current episode of the OMR Podcast with host Philipp Westermeyer.