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New Froogle Tab on Google Homepage

Googles Froogle Hits the Streets

   
5:38 am on Mar 29, 2004 (gmt 0)

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Continued from: [webmasterworld.com...]


Froogle tab is now on google homepage.

[edited by: Brett_Tabke at 3:36 pm (utc) on Mar. 29, 2004]

6:38 am on Mar 29, 2004 (gmt 0)

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Well, there are about five threads running on this simultaneously. :-)

I see that the SERPs are showing no directory listings at all. Looks like the Google directory has effectively been dropped (or rather it's there, but only for people who make an effort to find it).

6:43 am on Mar 29, 2004 (gmt 0)

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Also... An interesting interface decision: the formerly gray links to "Cached" and "Similar pages" are now a light gray-blue. I'd read this as a way to indicate a link, but a weak/unimportant one. Very thoughtful. It will be interesting to see if it catches on as a standard. Can't decide if I like it yet.
2:37 pm on Mar 29, 2004 (gmt 0)

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We had 4 threads running on this so I combined them here.
2:41 pm on Mar 29, 2004 (gmt 0)

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The only thing I do not like is the dictionary to the right side of the screen and replaced with definition. I'm too used to just clicking the word.

Oh well.

I wonder how the new design might affect the Adwords CTR.

3:01 pm on Mar 29, 2004 (gmt 0)

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I know it was far from perfect, but it does seem a shame that the Dmoz link was dropped.

But, overall, a nice design change. More compact. More clickable.

3:46 pm on Mar 29, 2004 (gmt 0)

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Dropping DMOZ is another strike at e-commerce sites that don't pay. All the e-com folks here know the value of a DMOZ listing for free traffic. Well, kiss that one goodbye and get out your Adwords checkbook!

It's going to be interesting to see how Google plays the DMOZ link in their ranking algo from here out. Will it be cheaper to buy AdWords than to run a DMOZ listing campaign?

And, heh, whats that light grey text on the white background in the serp's upper right hand corner say? Hard for the eye to catch it, isn't it? Notice how it disappears entirely as soon as you scroll down a little.

4:05 pm on Mar 29, 2004 (gmt 0)

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oh.... New is scary... new means trouble....

I miss the colored boxes for the AdWords ads.

I believe this will have a negative impact on the click rates.
Hope not.

I would have liked the whole thing except for that.

4:14 pm on Mar 29, 2004 (gmt 0)

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Slashdot is having an interesting discussion about these changes as well.

So far, rumors of different layouts for Adsense, and a javascript tracking function on some SERPs to see where you clicked (function clk(n,el)). Can anyone confirm or infirm these?

Also, are Web Alerts new, or have I just not been paying attention?
http ://www.google.com/webalerts

4:30 pm on Mar 29, 2004 (gmt 0)

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ads dont' look that appealing to me anymore. They look very bland, before they were very cool to click on! eheh

Anyone else agree with me?

4:49 pm on Mar 29, 2004 (gmt 0)

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"GG, The most startling thing is the absence of Google's Directory results. Do you know if G plan to permanently stop imbedding directory results from appearing in its main search results?"

If you looked at click-through on the tabs, categories at the top of search results and so on, I believe that the clickthrough on the Directory tab was lower than the other tabs. You can still reach the directory by clicking the "more>>" link, and the weight in scoring for ODP links hasn't changed, but in our UI experiments we have to trade off what different people use and try to show the most useful information that we can (insert reference to Edward Tufte here).

There will be healthy debate all over the web about why this font color got a little lighter or so forth, but after hearing about the amount of testing that went into this UI, I feel pretty confident that these changes are backed up with solid data.

5:13 pm on Mar 29, 2004 (gmt 0)

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The color of the adwords ads really added something to the look of the page. It's very very bland now as a lot of people are saying. I really don't like this new layout. It needs an injection of color ... somewhere.
6:26 pm on Mar 29, 2004 (gmt 0)

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filo,

I'm with you. The ad colors were slick looking b4.

6:50 pm on Mar 29, 2004 (gmt 0)



As a user and an information seeker this is not a good development.

The double-whammy of removing the directory tab, and removing the category link from under individual sites, removes a valuable secondary source of data. It is a retrograde step from a search quality perspective.

The change in adwords format does indeed reduce the diferrential between relevance based on the algorithm, and placement by advertising. Another retrograde step in terms of search quality.

I really don't understand Google any more. There have been countless debates on here about the quality of the the actual search results for months now. The vast majority of people believe them to be worse than they were.

Now they have removed, or at least hidden, a secondary data source and enhanced the visual presence of adverts.

It is very very poor in my view, and I feel certain many vanilla users will feel the same way. Unless it has a short term beneficial effect on Google's own Adword income, I fail to see the logic.

7:24 pm on Mar 29, 2004 (gmt 0)

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The vast majority of people believe them to be worse than they were.

Oh, come on Zeberdee. Can we please skip phrases like "vast majority of people" and all the other hyperbole?

The people who've been complaining here on WebmasterWorld (mostly webmasters, by default) make up an infinitesimal percentage of Google's main audience, which consists not of webmasters, but of people that use Google to search.

When web stats start to show Google no longer rules in terms of things like "search hours" and other metrics, then maybe we can toss around terms like "vast majority of people."

What I'd love to see in this thread is more thoughts on the impact of the Froogle tab now being front and center on Google.com. What impact will it have on Joe Q. Public's search habits? Will more people now use that for shopping/product-related searches, rendering the placement of those types of listings in the main Google.com SERPs any less important or effective? It's only one little link, but this is a major change in what Google offers to the millions that use it every hour, every day. Shopping search is now formally separated from regular search. Will users follow the carrot and support the separation by making Froogle searches as common as Google searches?

7:40 pm on Mar 29, 2004 (gmt 0)

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>the impact of the Froogle tab

Its going to be significant. I think that the CTR on the Froogle listings in the regular serps are not as high as one would expect, but now combined with the tab, I think we can expect traffic to increase substantially.

>Google.com SERPs any less important or effective?

No, but I think that having a result in the main serp along with an adword, and a Froogle listing gets you quite a bit of real estate on the page and can have the result of making you look "important" in the mind of the user.

12:11 am on Mar 30, 2004 (gmt 0)

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I miss having the ODP links in the SERPs. While the ODP data isn't always the best (especially for commercial categories), I've often found that viewing a relevant directory page reveals a number of relevant sites that I wouldn't have found in the SERPs.
12:42 am on Mar 30, 2004 (gmt 0)

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Sure wish people would actually USE the froogle tab. I'm listed as #1 for my keywords, plus I am the lowest price.

They don't seem to unfortunately..

I'm in software .. anyone else see this?

3:33 am on Mar 30, 2004 (gmt 0)

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Regarding the highlighted keywords in the URLs, Google is doing this to even out the playing field.

Now everyone else who is not an SEO will see how having keywords in page names and urls means something to google.

So in essence, google is making it harder to optimize for search engine placement.

:(

7:34 am on Mar 30, 2004 (gmt 0)

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I've only just noted that thing about the lack of ODP links in the listings.

I am not sure whether this means that the ODP data is essentially omitted from the listings or whether the ODP data is used to add weight to the generic listings behind the scenes.

I must say I do like this new development though. If we could remove DMOZ completely from the generic listings and make it a special search then it would make my life more fun.

I've been made aware of certain DMOZ editors that offer up SEO services claiming expert knowledge in the field, when in fact all they are, are editors of a senior category.

Hopefully that's now over.

Glyn.

5:02 pm on Mar 30, 2004 (gmt 0)

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I like the highlighting of the search terms in the URL. Unfortunately, if any of the search terms start with a capital letter in the URL, they don't get highlighted, regardless of whether or not the person searching type in the search with a Capital letter.

Of course ALL my sub-directories and page names are properly written with a capital first letter. :^(

5:46 pm on Mar 30, 2004 (gmt 0)

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I feel as though they altered adwords to also prevent those damn spyware progs from hijacking their results.

The adwords design change really has had no affect on the influence of me clicking any of the ads. I mean, I still click them alot when searching.

7:15 pm on Mar 30, 2004 (gmt 0)

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I personally don't like new google design, kinda like alltheweb.com (it isn't bad in itself, but i prefer google original look, not repetition of already used site). Top options ("web" "images") are in too small and ugly font ("Times" instean of good old arial), looks inconveniently and too much primitive :-(
4:47 am on Mar 31, 2004 (gmt 0)

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We're #1 for a lot of products on Froogle, and we're seeing very few visitors coming from there. 212 visits yesterday and 190 so far today. (8:45 pm) I would have expected to get more Froggle traffic when they went live. Are people not really using Froogle much? Or just not clicking on our products there? Maybe it's just that people have yet to catch on to it? Has it been rolled out *everywhere*? or maybe just on limited areas?

BTW: We sell mostly food products.

1:23 pm on Mar 31, 2004 (gmt 0)

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just got the Froogle newsletter. Product searches are now integrated to Google searches. This is the example they give in the newsletter:
http ://www.google.com/search?hl=en&lr=&ie=UTF-8&oe=UTF-8&safe=off&q=hiking+boots

Unfortunately, for those items I sell there is nothing returned from the Froogle search :(

If you do, please tell us if this increases traffic!

7:51 pm on Mar 31, 2004 (gmt 0)

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GG:
I like the design, but I do miss the directory. It had value for non-commercial users.
7:57 pm on Mar 31, 2004 (gmt 0)

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Also, I noticed in froogle (atleast in the categories I searched) that affiliate sites have been added. I was under the impression that froogle is strictly for commercial non afffiliate sites. Maybe I am mistaken.
8:02 pm on Mar 31, 2004 (gmt 0)

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>is strictly for commercial non afffiliate sites.

Yeah, but lots are sneaking in.

9:06 pm on Mar 31, 2004 (gmt 0)

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Even if you choose not to click on the froogle tab, for several test searches Google is displaying (disguising) Froogle as the number one result. Other searches are displaying Google News as the number one. How will this effect CTR to the other first page results?
4:00 am on Apr 2, 2004 (gmt 0)

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>(disguising)>

Not disguised. They are clearly marked as product search results and are seperated from the regular SERPS.

4:55 am on Apr 2, 2004 (gmt 0)

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Not disguised. They are clearly marked as product search results and are seperated from the regular SERPS.

I go directly to google's home page. I choose not to use froogle so I do not select the froogle tab and enter my search term and hit enter. On the top are two sponsored links with a light blue background. On the right are eight sponsored links with a thin blue line to separate them from the search results. The froogle results are displayed at the top of the regular results with the same background color, same font, and no line separating it from the other results. To the typical user and not a senior member of WebmasterWorld this is designed to blend in with the regular results.

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