In its quest to give the most relevant and precise results as fast as possible to its users, Google has taken a step further, enabling them to share their recommendations with others right in the search results. It’s termed +1. To recommend a finding, all one has to do is simply click +1 on any webpage or ad one thinks is useful. These +1’s will then appear in the search results.
Taking into account the fact that relevance is more about relationships and words on webpages, Google has recently started to incorporate more useful information from other users you know—things they have shared on Flickr, Twitter and other sites- in search results.
Now how is the new feature going to help you as a Google search user?
Say, for instance, you are planning a trip to Tahoe, Calif. While doing a search, you might now come across a +1 from your slalom-skiing friend just next to the result for a good lodge in the locality. Or say, if you are searching for an innovative pasta recipe, the search will also show +1’s from one of your culinary expert college friends. Even if none of your colleagues are caffeine or baristas addicts, the search may still display how many users on the Internet have +1’d a local coffee shop.
A post by the company’s Product Manager, Rob Spiro, elaborates that the feature of +1’s is their user friendliness and relevance as you will receive the right recommendations (since they are from users who indeed matter to you), at the right time (while you’re looking for some information about that service or product) in your search results.
So how does Google know exactly which +1’s to display to a user? Like social search, the search engine giant makes use of many signals for identifying the most handy recommendations, including stuff like the people you’re already connected to through it (for example, your chat buddies and contacts). Soon the company may incorporate other signals like your connections on networking sites, such as Twitter, to make sure that your recommendations get that much more relevant.
To start +1’ing the information you wish, you will be required to either upgrade a Google profile or create if you don’t have one. You may use your profile to view all your +1’s in one click, and do away with those you do not intend to recommend. To view +1’s in your search results you should log into your Google Account and then carry your search.
Initially, +1’s will be shown alongside Google search results and ads. They will gradually appear in other places (other Google tools and generic sites on the Web) in the weeks ahead. It also provides an excellent opportunity for advertisers. Google’s idea is that +1, combined with all of the social content being included in search, will lead to better and more relevant search results than users get currently.