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Yahoo launches new “Search Assist” and multimedia content in results

Annie Wakefield
Digital Marketing Manager
2 October 2007

Are Yahoo emerging from the search engine crowd?

Yahooblog
Yahoo
has formally announced a new range of search upgrades on their site that
include shortcuts and the integration of videos and photos directly in search
results. Another new
feature is at the
heart of the upgrades, “Search
Assist
”, which is currently only available in the U.S, but will soon be
made available in the UK as well.

Search
Assist helps users by offering suggestions, query refinements and numerous
related topics in the form of a drop down menu when users hesitate as they
enter keywords and the engine senses that help might be needed. Similiar to the
address bar of your internet browser.

In
addition to Search Assist, Yahoo, have also announced the availability of more
categories of shortcuts across a wider range of vertical categories: events,
music, movies, travel, sports, health, shopping, businesses and restaurants.

While
Shortcuts are placed consistently at the top of SERP’s the video thumbnails
appear further down the page, similiar to Google Universal
Search
.

Yahoo
also added that it has made search performance 50 percent faster and increased
the size of its index to be "the most comprehensive offering on the
Web." However, many of the new upgrades are very similiar to the recent
improvements made on MSN
Live
. Google and Ask have already
launched similiar search features however, each engine believes that their
improvements are better and different.

The
bottom line however remains that all the changes are beneficial to consumers
and generally all the major search engines are moving in the same direction,
with the only differentiator possibly being “Search Assist”. This helps to
speed up the process and also makes the search experience easier and more
enjoyable.

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