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New Search Features at Google

If you have performed an internet search using Google recently, you may have noticed something different.

Google navigation

For the first time since May 2007, Google has updated the features on its search results page. Nestled in the left hand menu column are new search tools to aid users in narrowing their search results.

Is this change for changes sake? Unlikely. Google's rivals have been updating their search engine navigation, so this can be seen as playing catchup to the competition. It is also a strategy to stay ahead of rivals and avoid relegation to 'has been.'

How will users react? The true test of change is the reaction of users. We have all performed searches that returned results which were a nuisance. Google's new tools promise to help eliminate the irrelevant. At a click, search results can be narrowed, to shopping sites, images, blog/reviews, etc.

What is to be learned? Google has set an example that change can be good. Improving functionality, keeping navigation simple yet powerful, these are things which keep visitors returning. Changes do not need to be dramatic, but they should represent an improvement in the visitor's experience.

Try googling a search today and test the new navigation aids.

For more information on Google's new look try these resources:

Google's official blog at: http://googleblog.blogspot.com/2010/05/spring-metamorphosis-googles-new-look.html

LA Times blog: http://latimesblogs.latimes.com/technology/2010/05/google-gives-its-search-results-a-major-makeover.html

Date: 05.13.2010

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