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Yahoo Introduces Search Direct (beta)

 5:40 pm on Mar 23, 2011 (gmt 0)

Yahoo Introduces Search Direct (beta) [ycorpblog.com]
This new feature (currently in beta) taps into Yahoo!’s unique opportunity to combine content and structured data and to provide a rich search experience. Search Direct predicts search results as fast as a person types, character by character, and presents those results dynamically, generating a fast, simple search experience that goes beyond a list of blue links. Search Direct rolls out in a public beta to Yahoo! users across the U.S. today, and will be available in other Yahoo! products and markets later this year.

With Search Direct, Yahoo! content is combined with information from the Web to provide rich answers, not just links, and to give people the option to immediately engage or continue to a traditional search results page. In this beta release, coverage includes top trending searches, movies, TV, sports teams and players, weather, local, travel, stocks, and shopping categories now available at search.yahoo.com.




 6:21 pm on Mar 23, 2011 (gmt 0)

Interesting. Anyone seeing this yet? Based on the video it looks like you need to be in the top sites otherwise you won't get many clicks. Not that we get a ton of traffic from Yahoo anyways, but it is something.


 6:32 pm on Mar 23, 2011 (gmt 0)

Before I typed anything it predicted I was interested in Elizabeth Taylor's death. Once I started typing it did a good job predicting what I was typing and offered the top three sites for those queries. Pretty nifty.

Will this be a blow for those below the top three?

Why only show the top three? Did Yahoo research show less satisfaction for sites beneath the top three?

Will be interesting to see if site publishers report changes in traffic.

Will Yahoo Search advertisers see less clicks since no ads will be shown for the Search Direct clicks?


 8:02 pm on Mar 23, 2011 (gmt 0)

Why only show the top three?

That's probably all they've had time to hand code in there yet ... Give 'em time, they'll show more ... They're definitely NOT grabbing the top 3 results from the main dataset ... They didn't show a thing for a few of my searches.


 8:13 pm on Mar 23, 2011 (gmt 0)

They're definitely NOT grabbing the top 3 results from the main dataset...

You're probably correct regarding the queries you are trying, I don't doubt you. However for the queries I'm trying they are indeed grabbing from the top three.

Are you in or out of the United States?


 8:29 pm on Mar 23, 2011 (gmt 0)

In the US ... Try [widget world].
You'll get results until you start on the w of world.

ADDED: It actually seems odd to me they wouldn't just pull the top 3 results, but if they were they would have results for everything they have results for, so there has to be something else going on … so odd¿


 8:44 pm on Mar 23, 2011 (gmt 0)

Aha! I see what you mean. I tried Link Building. Aaron Wall is in the first spot but then the next two don't match up with their SERPs. Some of the queries match up to the top three and some of the queries do not. Good catch!


 8:55 pm on Mar 23, 2011 (gmt 0)

Thanks ... Makes me wonder what they're up to?
No ads, results aren't coming from the main index ... Where's M$ in all this?


 8:40 am on Mar 24, 2011 (gmt 0)

They are not showing Ads right now.

But IMHO if this search is preferred by users (over google) and if Yahoo can turn the tide then putting advertisement on right side of suggestion box would be simple.
But I think Yahoo has tried to do something good after long time.

Overall some fresh thinking from Yahoo in search area.



 9:27 am on Mar 24, 2011 (gmt 0)

SearchEngineLand has an interview [searchengineland.com] with a Yahoo-er who reveals some details about the algo.

...right now the links and content being shown in the right part of the box are the URLs that are the “most clicked” throughout the Yahoo network...

Maybe this addresses the difference between the SD links and the SERPs links:

Yahoo is trying to provide specific answers, as well as expose adjacent and related content.

Here is what Yahoo says regarding monetization, which I am assuming is related since it's discussed within the context of Search Direct:

...Yahoo’s agency and brand advertising partners have been very intrigued and excited about bringing more brand advertising to search... there are some discussions going on now and that in a few months Yahoo users would see the results as ads roll out.

...Search Direct represents the convergence of search and branding and of search and discovery.

Also from SEL, Danny Sullivan posted a match up of Google versus Yahoo [searchengineland.com] and comes up with some interesting results.


 6:55 pm on Mar 24, 2011 (gmt 0)

not nearly as annoying as Google's Instant.

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