The search engines modified the old method of search a couple of years ago: the principal theme of “ten blue lines” has been removed and changed. Earlier, the goal of every online business was to be included in the top group on a search engine results page. To be in the top ten was a mark of effectiveness. Today, it is definitely not enough.
When performing search, one still can be satisfied with the ten blue lines approach, but more and more likely will use the tools at one’s disposal to venture beyond the idea of standard results. SharePoint 2013 Search Applications permit such flexibility and outside-the-box thinking and analysis.
The search box can be adjusted now, queries can be transformed by the supposed intent of the user. The overall search result patterns are reshaped. Users can move away from standard results and focus on customized search applications, sometimes even without having “real” search experience.
The idea is that the “ten blue lines” are now several subsystems such as local search, paid listings, related product information, HR and/or CRM data, etc.
In uses of Search Applications for internet searches, there is a lot of unused flexibility. Join me to discuss these strategic questions and others at the JBoye Web & Intranet Conference this week where I moderate a roundtable discussion on “Architecting the Optimal SharePoint Search Strategy“, right before my session on “Real World Challenges in SharePoint Search“.
Or if you cannot be there but have any related questions or comments, please don’t hesitate to let me know as a comment below.