The latest battle in the land of search engines is social search – the addition of signals from social graphs to bring users increasingly personalized search results. To that end, Google has been working on its offering the longest, first introducing the idea back in 2009 when it launched in the U.S.
Today, the company announced that it is “bringing Social Search to more users around the globe” and that it has plans to bring its most recent social addition – the +1 button – with it.
According to the announcement, Social Search will be heading abroad and rolling out in 19 new languages in the coming week, with more languages soon on the way. It also says that it plans on introducing the +1 button “as soon as [it] can.”
Social Search had previously been an experimental feature before finally becoming official in February 2011. The feature takes users social connections from a number of different sites and uses them as a signal when returning search results. You have to be logged into your Google account to see the feature, which pulls results from social networks, friends’ blogs and shared content. Take a look at an example result:
When Google rolled out the feature officially, it also added increased user control, which allows users to go to their Google profile settings and determine which accounts they want to include and which they don’t.
Social search has been heating up recently, with Bing announcing this week that it would add Facebook as a major signal in its own search rankings – something that could certainly give it a leg up on Google.
If you haven’t yet seen the feature, the following video gives a bit more of an explanation: