Ads & Links & More Coming To Google Suggest

Google has announced several changes that are coming soon to Google Suggest, the feature that suggests search queries as you type. The two most interesting to me are the inclusion of ads and direct links in the search suggestions. Let's take a look, starting with the suggested links. Navigation Links If Google is confident about what you're looking for, it may turn the first suggestion into a link. The example Google cites is a link to the official Kennedy Space Center web site as someone types "kennedy space cen." Users who already have access to the new feature have had fun [...]

The Google Wonder Wheel & Other Search Refinement Features Get Live Test

Google Blogoscoped spotted an interesting test at Google allowing searchers to refine their search results in various ways, including clicking through a "Wonder Wheel." There's nothing particularly game changing, but the test is interesting if only for demonstrating how Google will react when competitors suggest it is "behind" in the search space. My separate post, How Google Shot Microsoft After It Took A Knife To A Gunfight, gets into the competitive aspect. Here, I'll focus on what the new features offer, to those who have been randomly selected for the test. I'll also explain how [...]

Google Search Suggest Get Ads, Links & Answers

Earlier this year, Google Suggest finally made it to the Google home page. The feature suggests queries as you begin typing in the search box. Now Google is testing providing links to web sites, direct answers and even ads that appear within the Google Suggest list. Not everyone will see these changes. Google's showing them to a small, randomly selected group of people in the US. The experiment might end at any time and not necessarily become a permanent feature. Below, you can see how when typing in the beginning letters of New York Times (new york t...), "regular" Google Suggest off [...]

Yahoo Launches Search Assist For Image Search

Yahoo has rolled out the Search Assist feature to Image Search. For example, a search for images on barack obama will return images within the actual Search Assist bar. Here is a screen capture: To generate search assist image results, go to Yahoo Image Search and begin typing. If the query is popular enough and can be refined, Yahoo will show images within a different refinement category. So in the example above, the first image on the left, is a refinement option to see [barack obama family] pictures. In addition, after you search, you can click on the little up arrow under the [...]

Yahoo Search Assist At 1; Google Toolbar At 8

Break out the birthday candles for Yahoo's Search Assist and Google's Toolbar. Yahoo reminds us today that its Search Assist feature was launched a year ago this month. Search Assist is the feature that suggests words and phrases while you type in the Yahoo search box; it also suggests related concepts -- something, Yahoo tells us, that no other search engine is doing. And Yahoo can celebrate these numbers: Usage of search assist is up 60x since it was launched a year ago, and usage of related concepts has seen a 3x jump, according to Yahoo's blog post. The Google Toolbar, meanwhile, [...]

New Video: Easy Tips For Better Searching

Last year, Common Craft produced a great, short video explaining RSS "in plain English." The company is back now with another wonderful one, Web Search Strategies in Plain English. It's less than three minutes long and does a great job explaining how to use some of the most simple "power" commands at searchers' disposal -- the minus sign and quotation marks. Be sure to check it out! The video is also below: [...]

Google Now Searching For Synonyms

Blink, and you might have missed it. Google's now doing synonym searching. It's something they quietly noted in a past Google blog post and one that comes up again today in a post that covers how Google uses experiments to improve the search interface. Back to synonym searching in a moment. The main focus of today's post is how small changes can have a big impact on how users interact with search results. Some before and after screenshots of various search results are shown. Most compelling to me was how by making the + symbol thicker in a "Plus Box" that allows for stock quotes [...] Finally Gets Google Suggest Feature

After being in testing for literally years, Google Suggest is finally coming to This is the feature where as you start to type in the search box, related searches automatically appear below where you are typing. For example, start typing [olympics] into the search box at Google Suggest, and below the box, you start seeing suggestions such as: olympics 2008 olympics schedule olympics tv schedule olympics 2012 It's easy to move your cursor down to any of the suggestions to select that as your search. Google Suggest was rolled out as a Google Labs project back in December 2004. [...]

Yahoo Gives Inquisitor, Mac Browser Plugin, First Upgrade

The Yahoo Search Blog announced that they have released a new version of my favorite search browser plugin named Inquisitor. The upgrade makes the Apple Safari search plugin faster, cleaner, and multi-lingual. By faster, Yahoo has integrated Inquisitor with BOSS, enabling a faster return on your Yahoo queries. Yahoo has cleaned up both the Inquisitor home page and the client to be simpler and more streamlined. Finally, Yahoo has expanded the language support to Japanese, Korean, Traditional Chinese, Spanish, Portuguese, French, Italian, and German. Here is a screen shot of the new client [...]

Visual Search The Future? Spare Me The Eye Candy

About two years ago, I wrote an article called Why Search Sucks & You Won't Fix It The Way You Think. In it, I explained various ways people have tried to make search "visual" and why those have largely failed. That's mainly because "list view" or "10 blue links" still works for lots of search activities. But visual search has picked up some attention recently with new players coming in. Is visual search the future, where we'll be flying through our results Minority Report-style? Maybe in several years, but for now, I still see a lot of eye candy and no real b [...]

Google Video Adds Search Suggestions

Google Video has introduced related searches and suggestions in a horizontal layer just below the search box. These suggestions broaden or alter the scope of the original search query. It's a way to drive additional volume and page views on Google video. However, YouTube accounts for 98 percent of video viewing on Google-owned properties, according to comScore. Source: comScore (4/08) [...]

Google Makes “Related Searches” Fresher

Google announced that the related search feature is now fresher then ever. What that means is when you search on certain queries, Google may show you a line just above the search results with related search queries. Those related search queries are fresher, in the sense that they now should show more related searches based on your query but also based on current events. For example, a search on apple returns two relates searches, including [apple iphone] and [apple store]. Yes, the apple iphone is very current with the upcoming 3G iphone, and I assume people searching for Apple at this tim [...]

Powerset Launches “Understanding Engine” For Wikipedia Content

After nearly two years in the making -- and plenty of hype -- Powerset has finally rolled out a "natural language" search engine. It's not a Google killer. It's barely a business model right now. But at least it's something the world can finally play with, and under the hood, there's lots of potential. By the time you read this, the Powerset site should have changed into a tool that allows you search against material within Wikipedia. Why bother using Powerset rather than using Wikipedia's own search tool or even Google set to look only within Wikipedia pages? The Powerset pitch is t [...]

Yahoo Buys My Favorite Search Browser Plugin, Inquisitor For Apple Safari

Yahoo has acquired my favorite search browser plugin for Apple Safari, Inquisitor. Inquisitor is an extremely useful search refinement and search aid tool for the Apple browser market. Inquisitor offers autocomplete, refinements, suggestions, and also allows you to add any search engine you like, plus create your own personalized and advanced query operators, much like OpenSearch. I spoke with Ariel Seidman, the director of product management for this product, and he answered a number of questions I had about the acquisition. David Watanabe is the developer behind Inquisitor, and he is al [...]

Google Suggest Becoming A Default Feature?

I reported at the Search Engine Roundtable about how I spotted a WebmasterWorld thread that has three members noticing Google Suggest like features on Basically, when these users go to and begin typing in a query, Google begins to offer search suggestions. Google has implemented this feature as a default on other non-U.S. based search engine home pages but never as the default at Both Yahoo and offer search suggestions as you type, Yahoo's feature is known as Search Assist. It would not surprise me to hear that Google is testing this on some user [...]

Anything Else? Vivisimo’s Remix Clustering Surfaces Subtler Results

You know that aggravating feeling you get when you've done a search and your results are OK, but you're sure there's something better if only the "obvious" results weren't totally dominant? Or if you could somehow come up with a cleverer way of expressing your query without wasting a bunch of time diddling with variants of your search terms? Vivisimo's new remix clustering feature helps solve both problems. Vivisimo was a pioneer in introducing on-the-fly clustering, grouping results into topic folders. Do a search on Vivisimo's Clusty meta search engine and you'll see these cluster folders [...]

Yahoo Launches Search Suggestions In The UK

Yahoo UK has launched Search Suggest at Yahoo Search for UK users. If you do not see it now, you will probably see it in the "coming days," a Yahoo representative told me. When you begin to type a keyword, Yahoo will now offer their UK users suggestions. I covered the US launch of search suggestion back on July 12th. Yahoo has also been beta testing Search Assist, which I happen to now see as of this morning. Search Suggestions On Steroids: Yahoo Search Assist from Danny Sullivan a while back showed off many of the features of this new beta interface. I am personally able to see it in N [...]

Search & Serendipity: Finding More When You Know Less

Today, Just Behave welcomes the second of our guest columnists, Larry Cornett, Vice President of Search Experience at Yahoo.—Gord Hotchkiss Where do you go to get your daily fix of fresh information? If you are like millions of other users out there, you hit sites like Digg, Delicious, Techmeme, or just open your favorite RSS reader. Or, you tap into your Stumbleupon toolbar to see what your fellow Stumblers have found interesting lately. Most people don't automatically think of search as a place for serendipitous exploration. Search is best when you have something specific in mind [...]

Yahoo Adds Search Suggestions To Toolbar

The Yahoo Search Blog announced that downloads of the Yahoo Toolbar for Internet Explorer will now have "as you type" search suggestions functionality. Yahoo has been on a search suggestion frenzy lately, last month launching search suggestions on and beta testing Yahoo Search Assist. [...]

Search Suggestions On Steroids: Yahoo Search Assist

I chuckled a bit over the buzz Yahoo got when they launched Yahoo Search Suggest earlier this month because I knew something even better was coming: Yahoo Search Assist. Finally, it's going live and in the wild for lucky people who are selected at random for testing. If all goes well, eventually everyone will get to use this new search refinement feature that I find very compelling. Yahoo Search Assist is smart, in the sense that it shows up when you need it. Yahoo Search Suggest, as well as Google Suggest (and other tools like them), are cool in how they start to suggest things as you type. B [...]

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