Digital Insights

Google Social Search Goes Live


Published: October 26, 2009

Last week launched the social revolution for search. Microsoft’s Bing fired the first shot by announcing search deals with Twitter and Facebook and, at the Web 2.0 Summit, launching its Twitter integration. Google fired back almost immediately though, completing its own deal with Twitter and, perhaps more importantly, announcing a new feature: Social Search.

Social search, demoed at the Web 2.0 Summit by Google’s VP of Search Marissa Mayer, combines results from your friend’s blogs, Flickr, Twitter, FriendFeed and a wide variety of other social media sites (so long as your friends have connected their social accounts to their Google with Google’s regular search results. The feature will go live this afternoon, and can be found within Google Labs.

The experimental feature, once activated, will display relevant search results from your social circle at the bottom of the search results page. This could be travel photos from your friends, a recent blog post, a set of status updates, or other information Google pulls.

For now, the feature is opt-in, only affects certain searches, and appear at the bottom of the search results page. However, we won’t be surprised if Social Search results start blending into regular search higher up the page. After all, your social circle is often far more relevant than even the top Wikipedia article on a subject. Google seems to betting on it in a big way.

Here’s a demo of social search from Google: