Search and sensibility: Four tales of search. Presented at OZ-IA Conference, Sydney Sept. 20th 2008
Advanced Session, presented by Louisa Cameron, Angus Fraser, Scott Bryant, Chris Khalil (News Digital Media).
With the improved quality and growing user familiarity with search engines, site search is now an integral aspect of the IA for any information-rich website, yet there is more than one kind of site search. Different types of search can evolve to meet the needs of different users in different contexts.
The audience will hear about four different search contexts and will be shown how some tailored search mechanisms have been deployed on large commercial websites:
Careerone.com.au have conducted research and usability studies to learn about our job seekers and to find out about the unique context of job hunting.
TrueLocal.com.au is a local business directory where information is mapped to physical locations. What are the conventions & challenges of “local search”? What do users mean by “here”? What are the differences between web and mobile implementations?
Carsguide.com.au realises that searching for cars isn't easy, particularly if you don't know anything about cars. Guided search offers a way to assist users to move through the car buying process. We'll share some insights gained from designing guided search and share the challenges of positioning search and browse.
Increasingly search is driving traffic not just to your homepage but also to pages on lower levels of your site. To really harness this traffic it's important to start treating these lower level pages as mini homepages. News.com.au are doing this by using search to generate contextually relevant links and hence harvest long tail traffic.
We will compare and contrast the search experiences offered by these different services and in discussing the issues and considerations behind them reveal some of the lessons learned and offer pointers for improving your own work in search.
This will be a group presentation, delivered by four members of the News Digital Media experience architecture team. Each presenter will give a brief outline of the project they worked on, including the lessons learned from an IA practitioner's perspective.