Sensis posts new seach options

Sensis is expanding its online search capabilities to include Trading Post ads by the end of this month.

The move is the Telstra-owned company's first major use of the property it purchased last year for $636 million.

Sensis already uses information from products such as the White and Yellow Pages, City Search and WhereIs in its result listings.

Sensis.com.au senior producer, Henry Ruiz, said the company would continue to differentiate itself from others in the market by providing answers to queries at the results page level.

"Some sites give you links to a few sites that contain your answer," he said.

"If you search for, say, a Subaru Outback, a lot of other search engines will link you to car sites that sell Subaru Outbacks."

However, it is then up to the user to find such vehicles contained in those sites, according to Ruiz.

"What we will provide is actual listings, on our search engine results page," he said.

Unlike Sensis advertiser listings, which are placed prominently on the results page, Trading Post ads would receive no special treatment, Ruiz said.

"The Trading Post ads will be blended through the results, it will be based on relevancy," he said.

"The results will speak for themselves. If the site was dominated by advertising, the results would be filled with Trading Post ads."

Also to change will be the site's double search box home page. Sensis said it would revert to the more common single search box by the end of the month.

"We've been adding more content to the engine and we've found some content lends itself to one search box," Ruiz said.

The single box will automatically provide an Australian context to search queries, with the double box option available on the results page to refine or widen searches.

"Unlike other sites which try to provide Australian results, we've built our Australian index first, then the global one."

However, Ruiz would not enter into a boasting match with market leader, Google.

Google recently added to its search engine the claim that it indexes over eight billion Web pages.

"I don't want to get into numbers discussions," he said.

"But for us it's more about having the right content for Australians than how many pages you can index."

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Steven Deare

PC World
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