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The Shuffle: TikTok & Google The Goliath

12 Jul 2023
Read: 8 min
The Shuffle Ep. 01

In the first episode of The Shuffle, Consultant + TikTok Content Creator James Ikin takes a deep dive into how TikTok is taking the world of search by storm.


In 2021 TikTok was the world's most visited website, not Google.

Interestingly the platform appears to be moving beyond entertainment, now directly challenging Google in the world of search. With some saying, it's becoming the go-to search engine for Gen Z. 

TikTok isn't an exact match for Google search, but this is part of its appeal. The platform is all about content discovery and the appeal of TikTok search is the entertaining, visually stimulating answers to a user's queries. And thanks to its algorithm, search results that are customised to the user.

What does this mean? 

Instead of seeing bland text results that are promoted or SEO optimised from the brands with the most money like on Google, TikTok's search results are often created by normal people. This builds trust and relatability with the user, as the creator has put time into creating relevant content that will answer their search and resonate with the user.

Personally I think TikTok and Google cater to different search needs and TikTok will never replace the classic Google search. But it will eat into Google's core search and discovery business. It will make Google evolve, which is an achievement in itself - given the famous phrase "Google it" and that it often feels like Google IS the internet. This is impressive as TikTok is an app that so many coined as just young people dancing.

What's next?

Google is going to have to contend with no longer being the first option for those that are looking to discover new places or information.  


James is a TikTok and Instagram Creator with 355K+ followers who advises Lansons’ clients on the role of social in their communication programmes. He has provided strategic and creative support on both PR and social media to a diverse range of clients including The National Lottery and Standard Life.

James Ikin Lansons
James Ikin
Consultant + Tik Tok Content Creator

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