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Google expands ‘about this result’ feature for search results

The company wants to help users find out why its algorithm surfaces certain results

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Google has updated its “about this result” feature in Search and will now provide context about how and why a particular result was retrieved. 

The “about this result” information box was added earlier this year to make it easier for users to vet sources they aren’t familiar with and provide additional “peace of mind” when searching. Now, Google wants to give users a little more insight into how its algorithm works so they can get the most out of the search engine. 

“When you search for information on Google, you’re probably accustomed to seeing a lot of relevant results in a fraction of a second,” the company said. “But maybe you’ve found yourself wondering how Google connected those results to the words you typed, especially if you didn’t get exactly what you were expecting to find.” 

Learning more about search results

In offering more insight into how its algorithm works, Google is aiming to help users make better searches in the future. 

“Starting today, when you visit an About This Result panel — the three dots next to most results — you’ll get even more information about your results to help you make sense of the information and figure out which result will be most useful,” the company explained.

The company is now giving users information on how it links search terms to specific sites. For example, the tech giant said a search for “how to cook fish in the oven” would lead to a recipe from a site that included the words “how, cook, fish, and oven” and were associated with other terms like “ingredients” and “recipe.” The algorithm also relies on matching language and applying relevant geographic locations. 

The feature is available to users searching for English language results starting today. Google said it hopes to expand availability in the coming months. 

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