Now that both the leading search engines Google and Microsoft have made innovations to the way their search results are presented, it was only a matter of time before Yahoo! did the same thing.
Some time last month, Yahoo! launched a new homepage layout. Their search team is now concentrating on unifying this homepage with the search results page. They have undertaken a lot of research with eye-tracking studies and usability experiments to achieve this. This new search results page is expected to provide which are personally more relevant to the user.
Yahoo! engineers are currently trying to align the framework of the search results page with the new homepage, in order to provide quick access to various search applications which are available in the left hand column of the three column page. The left hand column also provides direct one-click links to other pages, thus managing to retain the user on the Yahoo! page, which advertisers are bound to like.
One important new feature is a section ‘Show Results From’ which allows users to see results from the sites they are most used to and interested in.
The newly launched note-taking application, Yahoo! Search Pad’ is at the top of the left column to provide easier access to research carried out.
SearchScan and SafeSearch features are also in this column to protect against viruses and spam during the search process. The Search Assistance feature is placed directly below the search box.
New Yahoo! Search results page
Yahoo! is also looking out for new ways for users to explore the organic results through a ‘Related Concepts’ section in the left column. They are essentially trying to find easier ways to display enhanced results from a larger number of sites.
A few random users from the USA have already been selected as test subjects for the new search results page. Feedback from this test will be used to fine-tune the page before the general launch.
In light of Yahoo!’s recent search agreement with Microsoft, it remains to be seen how much Yahoo! itself will benefit from these innovations.