Why don't people just google these questions for the answer?
They are doing just that!
The thing to remember about "Google" is that it's not this magical thing that just spits out answers to everything.
In order for Google to be able to help you find an answer, that answer must already exist online.
Now, as you would imagine, not every question has already been answered and posted on a website. Many students who post questions on Socratic do so because they couldn't find answers anywhere else.
Moreover, even if a question has already been answered, that does not automatically imply that the answer is helpful, or even correct.
We get many students who post questions looking for explanations that they can understand, explanations that they couldn't find on other websites.
Long story short, students post questions on Socratic because they need help, either because they couldn't find an answer somewhere else, or because the answer they found was not really helpful to them.
"Googling" a question does not imply finding a satisfactory answer, at least in some cases.
I wolud like to explain you why googling is not always the best option. I was a teacher of life sciences, so my examples would be from my field.
If you are talking about knowledge based question answering, then googling is an obvious option. I mean, if someone asks 'what should be normal glucose level in blood'-- Google will immediately throw up hundreds of links and the answer will be readily available.
In case someone wants to know 'why one diabetic person excretes glucose with urine and another does not'-- searching from links will not remain easy. Moreover, the person searching for an answer would be soon exposed to a new but related concept, like 'renal threshold'. Then one must start searching for something else on net and spend more time to read new things.
Now if the question arises 'why a diabetic person is suffering from polyuria (frequent passing of huge amount of urine)'-- the answer must include several underlying principles of physiology and biology to explain the reason. For such analytical question answering students turn to their teachers, no search engine would be able to help perfectly.
Moreover, a student or a person with limited knowledge, will not be able to comprehend everything available in the web. Sometimes they may even become confused, as all things available on net are not always correct: there are no filters to keep out myths and advertisements.
Sometimes another viewpoint or different explanation may be needed than can be found on available internet sites.
"Googling" (or other searches) are used. Often a reply will also contain links to sites found by the responder.
Often, a "direct answer" from an internet search will only deliver "facts" - often with little background or explanation, or the explanation may be beyond the comprehension of the questioner.
The ranking of topics on Socratic helps the responders also to understand the knowledge level of the asker. Responders can explain "the facts" and maybe provide other examples. Just as having and instructor in a course is more helpful than just reading a textbook, the type of interaction and response on Socratic is more helpful to people than a simple internet topic search.
Googling an answer is how I found Socratic!
As mentioned in all previous answers, google is a starting point, and whilst you may get the answer you're looking for, it's difficult to prove that the answer is fully correct.
More importantly, for me at least, is the explanation behind the answer, that is offered so well in Socratic.