Looking Back at Six Months of Yahoo! Search

  • Posted February 10th, 2010 at 6:00 am by Yahoo! Search
  • Categories: Search

The last six months have gone by in the blink of an eye for the Yahoo! Search team. Since the summer of 2009, we’ve launched an amazing amount of new improvements in Yahoo! Search to deliver a more personally relevant search experience. Now it’s even easier to find and explore what matters most to you. We made a short video to showcase what we’ve done in the last six months. Here are some of the highlights:

All-new Yahoo! Search

On Sep 22, 2009, we launched a completely redesigned Yahoo! Search in multiple markets around the world. The new page design aligns the experience across our new Homepage, Mail, and the search results page. This dynamic and integrated experience better understands what you are looking for so you can get things done quickly on the Web.

By rebuilding much of the foundational code for the SRP design and core functionality completely from scratch, we deliver a faster Search page with many exciting new features:

  • SearchMonkey structured data: You can explore results from key sites and narrow results using different types of SearchMonkey structured data, making it easier to see richer results from an increasing number of sites.
  • Search Scan, Safe Search, and Search Pad: You can quickly access search features that make your online lives safer and easier, including Search Scan/SafeSearch (which helps protect you from viruses, spyware, and spam while you search) and Search Pad, our note-taking and research application.
  • Query assistance: We’ve extended our powerful query assistance into the left-hand column of the page to allow you to easily explore and discover concepts related to your query.
  • Image and video search refiners: We also apply this same design framework to our Image and Video Search experiences, where the left-hand column provides powerful ways to explore the things you care about most; including travel destinations, music artists, movies, TV shows, and celebrities.

If you haven’t tried it yet, let us take you on our tour that explains all of the features we delivered with this new experience.

Structuring the Web

We launched Yahoo! SearchMonkey in May 2008. Throughout 2009 we’ve continued to accelerate the adoption of structured data across the Web and empower developers to innovate in search. In May 2009, we shared with you the key milestones with Yahoo! Search BOSS and SearchMonkey: At that time, we had over 70 million enhanced SearchMonkey results viewed by users every day; and we increased the adoption of RDFa structured data by 413 percent since October, 2008.

By August 2009, we had expanded our coverage for enhanced results to multiple structured object formats including Video, Documents,  Games, Products, Local Businesses, Event, Discussions, and News.

Great Assistance across Yahoo!

In November 2009, we extended our Search Assist features from the Web search boxes to the search box at the top of nearly every property on Yahoo! The new features take you directly to the information you need, whether it is real-time stock quotes or movie trailers. This also includes enhanced search suggestions and ways to easily navigate to your Yahoo! property of choice.

Discover Breaking News on Yahoo!

Starting in November 2009, we began including relevant photos, videos, and tweets about a breaking news story within the Yahoo! News Shortcut on our Search results page. By including more of this real-time content, we make it easier for you to find all the information you need about an unfolding news event in one place.

Local Searches Made Easier

We’re focused on making it easier to search for local businesses. Starting in December 2009, we display more Yahoo! local business shortcuts when you search for a business, even if you don’t include your location in your query. We also began providing new functionality directly within the local shortcut to refine results by neighborhood or nearby city right on the search results page. This further enhances an already great shortcut that provides more of the information you care about most directly on the search results page; including ratings, reviews, photos, and directions.

Twitter in Web Search

In addition to our News shortcut that was already showing tweets for breaking news topics, in December 2009 we started integrating recent tweets from Twitter directly as a dedicated shortcut on our Web search results page when you search for buzzy topics. By providing this Twitter shortcut, we make it easy for you to see tweets about topics that may not be in news headlines.

Great Multimedia Search

Building on the great feedback we received, we added even more entertainment refiners within our Image and Video Search experiences. These new refiners help you explore your favorite TV shows and movies, celebrities, or the albums and songs from your favorites music artists. By tapping into the “Web of Things,” we have created intelligent contextual refiners to narrow down your search intent intuitively.

Shashi Seth joins Yahoo! Search

Finally, a very exciting change for Yahoo! Search happened just last month when Shashi Seth joined us as the Senior Vice President for the Yahoo! Search Products team. We’re sure that Shashi will help us keep the ideas flowing as we continue to make Yahoo! Search better and incorporate Yahoo! Search into all Yahoo! products.

We’ve been working hard to not only make it even easier for you to find the information you need, but also to enable you to discover more than you ever expected when you use Yahoo! Search. We’re continually focused on improving the Yahoo! Search experience, so check back often as we bring you more enhancements in the coming months.

Larry Cornett
Vice President, Consumer Products, Yahoo! Search

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