While much of the search world keeps its eyes focused on every move made by Google, Yahoo and Microsoft, hundreds of small vertical search engines have sprung up, along with several technology providers that enable them.

The world of search is such a dynamic place that you can find major developments taking place right under your nose that just aren't getting that much attention. Vertical search is one area where this is happening.

Outsell reports that the vertical search market will reach $1 billion in revenue by 2009. And enterprise search technology provider Convera's recent survey of more than 1,000 professionals found that only 43 percent of business professionals always find what they want from a horizontal search engine after several attempts, and half of those who don't find what they want will then turn to a vertical search engine to improve their results.

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