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Search Engines Diverge, Dogpile Adds MSN Results

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As anticipated, InfoSpace has added MSN search results to its Dogpile meta-search site, which already offers combined and separate results from Google, Yahoo and Ask Jeeves, reports CNET. Dogpile offers search for images, audio, video, and yellow and white pages.

The idea behind meta-search is that a more comprehensive list of search results can be generated from various search engines because they don't serve up the same search results - a proposition backed up by a just-released University of Pittsburgh and Pennsylvania State University study touted by Dogpile.

According to the study, the overlap between search engine results is less than it was even a few months ago, and each engine is becoming even more unique in responding to search queries, reports Search Engine Watch. And that has both for searchers and for marketers.

Searchers relying on a single search engine are missing large amounts of content, while marketers targeting a single search engine in optimization and search marketing efforts are in effect neglecting potentially vast amounts of traffic from other sources.

The study found that of the first-page results from searches of 12,570 terms on the top four search engines - random queries on Ask Jeeves, Google, MSN search and Yahoo - the percentage of total results shared by all four was barely over one percent. About 11 percent of results were shared by two search engines, and nearly 85 percent of results were unique to one of the four engines.

Dogpile parent InfoSpace also plans to introduce search capabilities for mobile devices, enhanced video, blogs and maybe travel and jobs, according to Brian Bowman, the company's vice-president of marketing and product management, CNET writes.

Resources:

- "Different Engines, Different Results" (a 30-page PDF)

- One-page summary

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