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Google Search Plus Your World update
Written by David Harry
Tuesday, 10 January 2012 07:25

Today the fine folks at Google announced 'Search Plus Your World' – a new more socially personalized experience. From what I can tell so far it's more steps towards the socialization of search and deeper personalization. Something SEOs seemed to miss last year and something worth looking at in a more personalized future.

It will apparently be rolling out (for logged in users) over the next few days (on If you see it in the wild, drop me a comment and let me know what you think.

What's new?

As most of us expected, Google is going to be putting a lot more emphasis on social and in particular, Google Plus. Most of the changes are aimed at bringing Plus more prominence and further integrating the social graph into search personalization.

From the post;

    1. Personal Results, which enable you to find information just for you, such as Google+ photos and posts—both your own and those shared specifically with you, that only you will be able to see on your results page; 
    2. Profiles in Search, both in autocomplete and results, which enable you to immediately find people you’re close to or might be interested in following; and, 
    3. People and Pages, which help you find people profiles and Google+ pages related to a specific topic or area of interest, and enable you to follow them with just a few clicks. Because behind most every query is a community. 

Yes, mostly targeted at Google Plus, but we expected that...

Here's a few goodies from the screens they posted;

Google Search PLus Your World

Google Search PLus Your World

Google Search PLus Your World

And there's even a video to boot....

Control your world

One of the notable bits we found was,

"That means no results from your friends, no private information and no personalization of results based on your Web History. This toggle button works for an individual search session, but you can also make this the default in your Search Settings. We provide separate control in Search Settings over other contextual signals we use, including location and language. That's unprecedented transparency and control over personal search results."

This is interesting to see and the bits about turning the personalizations off temporarily or by default. I had recently mused that Bing, to catch up, should offer better controls on personalization and beat Google to the punch with the privacy crowd. Oh well... too late.

Think (not provided)

We can also take this announcement and consider the changes to secure searching and the (not provided) data we now see in Google referrers. Remember, that little data point is gold. It tells you exactly how much of your Google traffic is actually logged in. If we consider the ongoing personalizations in the SERPs, we can better plan marketing activities around it.

Let's say your site is in the upper levels, around 20% (not provided). It makes a whole lot of sense to be focussed on the personalization trinity (behavioural, social graph and geo-localized) within your ongoing marketing programs.

Good day to be talking entities

It's actually kinda eery how this announcement came out the same day that I was writing about entities here on SNC. Timing is just perfect... they even mentioned,

“We’re transforming Google into a search engine that understands not only content, but also people and relationships.“

It can’t be understated how personalization (behavioural, social and geo-local) will continue to change the search landscape in 2012. And we haven't even gotten into the implications of these annotations as far as click-through goes. I'm sure there will be some eye-tracking reports out in short order though...

The evolution of the SERP continues my friends... welcome to 2012!

David Harry -

Hi my name is Dave and I, am an algo-holic

I am an avid search geek that spends most of his time reading about and playing with search engines. My main passion has always been about the technical side of things from a strong perspective rooted in IR and related technologies.You can find me providing SEO consulting services for Verve Developments.

You can also hook up with me via


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