Good or bad, it makes Google+ even more relevant to search visibility
Google just announced some new elements it is bringing to Google Search: personal results, profiles in search, and people and pages. They’re billing the changes collectively as “Search, Plus Your World”.
Now, Google has been doing personalized search to some extent for quite a while. Likewise, profiles have appeared in search results for quite some time. The new features are different in that the personal results will let users find info specifically for them. This may include Google+ photos and posts of their own and things that have been shared with them. Profiles will appear in both autocomplete and results. The “people and pages” feature comes in to enable users to find people profiles and Google+ pages related to topic areas of interest, and make it easy for users to follow these people.
“Search is pretty amazing at finding that one needle in a haystack of billions of webpages, images, videos, news and much more,” says Google Fellow Amit Singhal. “But clearly, that isn’t enough. You should also be able to find your own stuff on the web, the people you know and things they’ve shared with you, as well as the people you don’t know but might want to… all from one search box.”
“As a child, my favorite fruit was Chikoo, which is exceptionally sweet and tasty,” says Singhal, sharing an example of where the new features may prove useful. “A few years back when getting a family dog, we decided to name our sweet little puppy after my favorite fruit. Over the years we have privately shared many pictures of Chikoo (our dog) with our family. To me, the query [chikoo] means two very sweet and different things, and today’s improvements give me the magical experience of finding both the Chikoos I love, right in the results page.”
Google+ Clearly Now More Important To Search
In terms of Profiles appearing in search, Google is demonstrating why it can pay off in search visibility to be active on Google+ and develop a substantial following. Before it was clear that this was beneficial, but now, you can see directly where this will help you. Not only will Google show people you are friends with, but it will show people it thinks you would be interested in.
Google says it will show autocomplete predictions for “various prominent people from Google+, such as high-quality authors from our authorship pilot program”.
Clearly, this is also another reason to use authorship markup.
People can click on these results and easily add the person to their circles on Google+.
It doesn’t look like brand pages will be showing up as autocomplete predictions. When asked about this, a Google spokesperson told WebProNews, “For profiles in search, you will see an autocomplete prediction for people who have Google+ profiles. These are people you’re connected to or popular people related to the query. For Google+ Pages, there’s Direct Connect (launched back in Nov).”
More on Direct Connect here.