AOL Enhances Its Google Powered Search Engine
Search Engines seems to be going the browser engines way. There are few popular engines and companies are using them with value added services to make their own. And as expected Google seems to be the #1 choice for most companies out there. Same thing is happening with browsers; Firefox and Internet Explorer engine are being used by other companies/organizations/individuals to make their own browsers with added functionality.
Amazon is a very good example with their excellent A9 engine proving that search engines can go beyond web searches. They integrated their own Alexa results with Google results. Then there is Amazonâ€™s own shopping search. All available with personalized search manager, which accepts Amazon user-id and password. If you have a broadband connection, A9 makes somewhat of a better sense than plain Google.
Now, AOL is going the same way. It uses Google engine as usual but is slowly integrating its own services inside the search views. AOL is now integrating content from its parent companyâ€™s subsidiaries. Also available are certain blocks of information called â€˜snippetsâ€™. All these appear on the search pages depending upon the searches.
One good example was found on searching for â€˜Fahrenheit 9/11â€™. AOL Search gave me information and stuff from Moviefone like Movie Details, Buy the DVD, Find the Best Price, and even trailers and clips. Searching for â€˜Eaglesâ€˜ (the music group) gave me information about Philadelphia Eagles from AOL Sports. Not exactly what I was looking for but it can be helpful for someone looking for the football team.
Overall, it is a good way to integrate you services and drive traffic to them. AOL saves money and effort in building a new Search Engine from scratch. It is in the coming days releasing its own browser where the search page (or homepage) can be directed to this search engine. And they can use the Search service more effectively.
MSN Search Beta Engine does so with MSN Music, Encarta and other Microsoft services. Seems like trend is spreading for making search pages more than just plain jane. Google is also not behind with its News and desktop search results integrated with normal searches.
Sushubh Mittal is the Search Engine Journal Tech Columnist and Editor of TechWhack