Wednesday, 8 September 2010

Google Instant Search – A to Z

The somewhat anticipated launch of Google’s latest enhancement has gone live today.  Google Instant Search is basically a progression on from the keyword suggestions which have been shown for some time to users as they type into the Google search box.  Instant Search takes this a  significant step further and actually updates the search results themselves as the user types.  Google say that this should reduce the average time taken to perform a search by between 2-5 seconds and thereby save Google/The World more than 3.5 billion seconds every day!

There have already been inevitable criticisms of this by those who decry the additional bandwidth this service requires (miniscule when compared with watching a Youtube rant on the same subject) and those who find the whole idea of change just too bewildering – how long before Time moans about it tomorrow?  For me, this is a very interesting development and makes the deep understanding of a particular target audience even more important in terms of optimising a website for search.

If you haven’t seen it already you should head over to Google to try it out or read a more detailed description (and watch a video) direct from the horse’s mouth.

Oh, and the A to Z?  Well an interesting exercise in vanity/brand awareness is looking at which websites are shown for each single letter of the alphabet.  I’ve seen a USA version but for your interest here is how it breaks down for the UK (for me at least, today).

A is for Argos N is for Next
B is for BBC O is for O2
C is for Currys P is for PayPal
D is for Debenhams Q is for QVC
E is for eBay R is for Rightmove
F is for Facebook S is for Sky
G is for Google Maps T is for Tesco
H is for Live.com (Hotmail) U is for Youtube
I is for ITV V is for Virgin Atlantic
J is for John Lewis W is for BBC Weather
K is for KLM X is for Xbox
L is for National Lottery Y is for Youtube
M is for MSN Z is for Zara

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