Understanding Google Instant

Solomon Thimothy - September 13, 2010

Google has announced it’s latest innovation to search: Google Instant. In this post, find out exactly what Google Instant is and how it works.

What Is Google Instant?
Google Instant predicts what you are searching for as you type. Google’s autocomplete will take what you have typed, predicts the most likely completion, and shows you those results in real-time. According to Google, some core features are:

  1. Dynamic Results – Google dynamically displays relevant search results as you type so you can quickly interact and click through to the web content you need.
  2. Predictions – One of the key technologies in Google Instant is that we predict the rest of your query (in light gray text) before you finish typing. See what you need? Stop typing, look down and find what you’re looking for.
  3. Scroll to search – Scroll through predictions and see results instantly for each as you arrow down.

Where Does Google Instant Work?
Google Instant is currently available for Google users in the US, UK, France, Germany, Italy, Spain, and Russia who use the following browsers: Chrome v5/6, Firefox v3, Safari v5 for Mac and Internet Explorer v8.

Also, it only works on the Google homepage or from the search box at the top of a Google search results page. It doesn’t work on other pages like iGoogle or from the Google Toolbar. It will also automatically be disabled when Google detects a slow Internet connection.

How Does Google Instant Work?
Because Google Instant requires you to have a Google account, the instant results will be both localized and personalized.

Search results for things such as “hotels” or “restaurants” will have Google suggest results for hotels or restaurants in or nearby your current location.

Google Instant will also remember your search history and provide you with results that you have visited several times in the past. Google’s Marissa Mayer confirmed during the announcement that web history and personalized results will flow into Google Instant.

Watch this video from Google to find out more about Google Instant.

Stay tuned for part 2 to find out how Google Instant will begin to change your search engine marketing strategy.

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