Hot on the heals of Google Instant Search, Yahoo are also rolling out significant changes to their search engine. However, will a revamp of the way Yahoo presents their search results be enough to enhance their slumping revenue, or are they destined to always be following in the footsteps of Google and Bing?
The goal of Yahoo’s new search is to make information more immediate and useful to people, by linking together entertainment and news content. While the exact details of the algorithms involved will remain secret, it seems Yahoo are utilising some kind of new tool that links keywords and results based on their contextual relationship. For example, a search for celebrities is likely to bring up content such as photos and video as well as text.
Yahoo senior VP for search and marketplaces Shashi Seth has said “Our goal is to understand what people care about and to make it fun for them to explore the most personally relevant, interesting, and informative content so that they can get things done faster and stay in the know.”
Other changes will see a slideshow above the standard results showing trending topics, and the incorporation of the “quick apps” feature. Yahoo are changing more than just their search web site however, with iPhone and Android users also getting access to these new search tools built around HTML5 technology. These new tools are available now in many parts of the U.S, with a worldwide release to follow early next year.
These changes to Yahoo search seem to be a serious move by Yahoo to distinguish themselves further from Google and Bing. They are not just about more accurate search results with these tools, but are offering a slightly new format they are hoping may resonate with the market. With Yahoo is a slow but steady decline, the results of these changes will be very important indeed.