Google Turning To Social Network For Better Online Search

August 15th, 2011 at 2:11 pm

It was only recently that Google has come up with its own social network that it calls Google+. It has since been received quite well by the interested online public and has continued to gain traction in terms of online usage and an increasing number of users. While this may be seen as Google’s own entry into the online social network world, it actually has been aimed to further help develop online search into a new and better experience for people.

Google has announced that it is coming up with an update for its Google Social Search. This project was started back in 2009 and it has only bee recently that Google may be providing an update. This will somehow be connected to its Google+ social network.

This recent update, according to its blog, would try to add up a bit of social search into its results. When users try to search for something in Google while being connected to their Google account, the search results will not only be about the usual results that one gets, it will also include comments and reviews, if there are any, about the particular searched topic that may have been made by someone that belongs to his or her social network at Google.

For example, if one decides to know something about a certain restaurant and searched for it in Google, the search results will also display any comments and reviews made or written online by someone belonging to the searcher’s social network. This will only work if the user is logged in to his or her Google account while doing the online search. Only the public posts will be included in the search results. Private posts made by those in Google’s social network won’t be displayed.

What this new update will provide is something that would personally help give search results more social relevance. Since certain reviews and comments on a particular search item are made by a person’s social network, it may be considered as having a more personal and trusted content in a way. People are likely to believe what their friends can say about a certain topic or item. It thus provides a higher level of relevance and trustworthiness to certain search results.

Although it might seem like a new way of searching for all things online, Google is not actually the first to take advantage of the social aspect in online search. Microsoft’s Bing actually made it a part of their own search results, by connecting their results with that of Facebook users and their own social network. Facebook users, when logged in and searching for something on Bing, would have search results displayed according to how many of their Facebook friends may have “liked” it on the social network. This just goes to show that online search may now be going more social in the near future.

Google may have seen the importance of social networks in online search and has been moving towards making their search more social. It still remains to be seem which method would become more effective in the coming years. Will people prefer Bing’s social search because of its connection with Facebook? Will people prefer Google for some social search relevance connected to its own early entry into social networking? Who knows really how it would eventually come out?


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