Google verbatim search lets users search for results using the literal words they type in the search box on Google.com. It's the latest in a line of fresh improvements.
Google (NASDAQ:GOOG) has brought back the ability for
users to search for results using the literal words they type in the search
The search engine provider used to enable this capability
through the + operator, which searchers could preface search queries with to
ensure that results would include the exact term. For example, a search executed
as "Google launches +Android Market" would include the term Android Market
in all results.
Yet Google did away with this operator in October
, noting that users use
the + operator in less than half a percent of all searches, and when they did
use it, they used it incorrectly. Google also uses the + operator in its
Google+ social network to call out or mention users within the network, which
may have something to do with the change.
What Google did is replace the + operator with the double
quotation marks operator -- "". So get the same results in the
example above, a user would have to render Android Market as "Android
Market" within the larger query.
Users who had grown fond of the Boolean + operator cried
foul. Google Distinguished Engineer Matt Cutts said
on Twitter he would look into the
issue, which Google Operating System detailed well.
Going forward, when users select the verbatim search tool
under the "more search tools"
refinement in the left-hand rail of Google search
results, Google will use the literal words users type into the search box without
making its "normal improvements."
These improvements include automatic spelling corrections;
personalizing search by using information such as previously visted Websites; using
synonyms of search terms; finding results that match similar terms to those in
your query; searching for words with the same stem; making some terms optional.
"In addition to verbatim search, which will be
rolling out to all users over the next few days, we're also applying similar
ideas directly to our algorithms, such as tuning the accuracy of when our query
broadening search improvements trigger," explained Corin Anderson, a
principal engineer for Google search, in a blog post.
Verbatim search is the latest tweak Google has made to
tune its search engine, which is under scrutiny for the Federal Trade Commission, U.S. Congress and the European Commission.
Other changes include serving fresher results for 35 percent
, including those that feature hot trends, current events or
Google also increased page content and decreased header and menu
content for its search snippets, extended rich snippets for
applications, and improved the way its finds official Web pages.