Yahoo Working On Searchers Intent With News Features

Yahoo Working On Searchers Intent With News Features

21st March 2012

Did you think search at Yahoo was over? They are done, through and won’t be doing anything new again? Think again. At Yahoo they keep continuing working on new developments, even for search, a place where they lost a lot of ground over the past few years.

Where everybody keeps talking about Google and their “Search Plus Your World” and how they try to make that as personal and as relevant as possible, in the shadow of all that noise around that Bing and Yahoo are trying to make their results as personal and relevant as well. Last week Yahoo reported about work their “Search science team” had done, trying to make search more intuitive and relevant. They want to “better anticipate the needs of the individual user as he or she searches online” and added a feature which will change your news feed constantly based not only on the news there is, but also on the intent of the user.

On their searchblog Yahoo explains:

“For example, with breaking news search terms constantly changing, humans can’t instantly track which queries are now breaking news stories. The intended result for a user can change for the same search query on a daily or even hourly basis. The technology can determine what the users are looking for and bring it to the top. And the key results that may have been at the top this morning, can be moved to the middle of the search results page at the end of day if user behavior determines other content is now more relevant.”

The result can be seen here for example:

In simple words it means that your news feed is constantly changing, looking at what you are most interested in. The nice thing about this feature is that you will probably hardly notice it. Not because you might not use Yahoo that much, but more because of the fact that it doesn’t really is that obvious and if all goes well, it fits your needs.

It is also interesting to take a good look at the Yahoo page and realize that the Yahoo search result page has a few features there different from for example Google which can be quite useful. Take the “Twitter” tab on news for example, something many will be interested in.

Written By
Bas van den Beld is an award winning Digital Marketing consultant, trainer and speaker. He is the founder of State of Digital and helps companies develop solid marketing strategies.
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