Google Testing Search Result Categories

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Google appears to be testing categories in its search results, according to reports in a webmaster forum, dividing results under headings like "comparison shopping" and "reviews."

It does just appear to be testing, as when I type in a term like "dvd player" or "digital tv," the same old Google results I’m used to pop up. But the Tedster at WebMasterWorld found something different and Barry Schwartz has a screenshot he’s posted on Flickr and SERoundtable.

The leading theory is that this is part of Google’s burgeoning Universal Search, and responses, as might be expected, are mixed. Tedster explains:

Even more than a simple "commercial" and "informational" taxonomy, there could also be classes like brochureware sites, trademark holders, businesses with a physical world presence, manufacturers, B2B, multi-topic (encyclopedic) and on and on. One factor Google could then tweak would be which classes of sites to force integrate into the results for which kinds of search terms.

This forced crazy-quilting of Page 1 might well push more users go to Page 2 – and that may even be seen as a potentially positive evolution at Google.

But as there always somebody in the crowd quick to naysay*, one forum user suggests the "average searcher" may be annoyed with suddenly having to move beyond page one to find what they’re looking for.

Well, guess we’ll see won’t we?

*This is why they invented Prozac, conspiracy theorists, to quell protests and, arguably, control overpopulation by making the masses happy and sexless, a new strategy thrust on humanity for establishment-favorable conditions where religion fails – watch out that one day they’ll add SSRIs to the water just like they do fluoride, so your smile is pretty as they do whatever they please, right? And you wondered why bottled water was suddenly bad for you? ;-) The preceding was dark humor, in case I scared you to death.

Google Testing Search Result Categories
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