Google Refines Search.
Maybe it’s just me and I missed this, but I think it’s relatively new. I found it by accident today. I haven’t heard any announcements from Google about it, but it seems like a great idea. Not only does it help people find what they’re looking for–Google’s #1 mission–but it could increase overall searches–Google’s #2 mission. They seem to show up under relatively basic searches: cancer, pain, etc.
My guess is that eventually Google will use this as a way to circumvent some of the less than ethical tactics of the SEO industry. They already do this when you search for musicians or music. You’ll start to see links to the Wikipedia entry, government related website, forums, news articles and so forth. Like someone recently pointed out, Google searches are quickly replacing http://www. in users browsers. Instead they’re just searching ‘facebook’ or ‘myspace’ and proceeding from there. Google is pre-empting irrelevancy by providing means to induce more exploration (and in turn more ads) These refined results are the internet equivalent of “Carl’s Jr. Next Exit” signs. They detour you from your intended destination, politely and pocket a few cents each time. I like it–especially as a shareholder.
What other searches are you guys finding these suggestions for? I’m curious.
That’s only the tip of the iceberg. Users can now power their own searches on their various sites and synthesize what visitors to their particular sites see in the results.
One of their biggest creations that’s still under the radar is Co-Op, a vertical search engine that allows you to customize your results. In other words, you can integrate an engine into your website, then refine the search results from the terms you type in, like tagging particular areas that the search turns up, etc. etc.
All this while making money off the advertisements. Pretty nice exchange.
My friend at Google’s done some great hacks with it (like using del.icio.us in conjunction), and I’ve done a little beta testing on it. Try it out if you can, it’s really neat: http://www.google.com/coop/