Russian search giant Yandex announced a newly redesigned search results page today, including new interactive snippets. The company calls these snippets "Islands".
Yandex says Islands will speed up the engagement with sites and services by allowing users to take action on their queries from the results pages. Users could, for example, buy movie tickets, make reservations at restaurants, or pay bills directly from the search page.
“Apps have changed people’s expectations of usability, especially on mobile,” said Ilya Segalovich, CTO at Yandex. “When people search on the rich web these days, they are often looking to carry out an action. What happens now is that even if you can see in search results a link to the website where you can potentially book your movie ticket or pay your bill, you still need to click through to this site and possibly even browse a few pages before you find the booking form. We’re speeding up this process."
"Interactive snippets deliver a new level of user experience," Segalovich adds. "Sitelinks are an outdated way of providing information and rich snippets are mere decoration. We know users want faster, more direct engagement with services, and interactive snippets mean businesses can better serve the needs of their customers by offering a shortcut to the ultimate search."
The company is careful to note that it will not determine when to show Islands itself. It does relinquish some control to the webmasters providing such services. Webmasters will also be able to determine what their Islands will look like, at least to some extent.
The feature will be available to all users on different types of devices, but will first launch for desktop computers and tablets before launching for mobile devices. It's being rolled out in Turkey today, then will be launched in Russia, Ukraine, Belarus and Kazakhstan in the coming months.
More on Islands here.