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SEARCH NEWS: Google updates boost real-time search

Google has launched a separate search engine dedicated to delivering real-time search results. It means that searches will become more relevant and faster as they combine both web results and social media updates.

Google initially introduced a real-time search results function to its main homepage last year after deals with Twitter, Facebook and MySpace. The deals enabled conversations, blogs and tweets to be automatically incorporated from the popular social media platforms into users' web search results. However, Google has now launched its standalone service in order to enable businesses to further refine their digital marketing strategies by targeting specific locations and tracking conversations.

In another of the search giant's updates, Google has also launched a new 'priority inbox' service for Gmail. The service can now analyse a user's email behaviour and prioritise emails depending on their perceived importance. The function separates emails into three categories - important/unread messages appear at the top, emails that have been 'starred' or require action appear next, with all other emails appearing last.

While most email providers already scan emails for junk, Gmail's priority inbox goes one step further by ranking emails in addition to filtering them.

Savvy B2B marketers will already be looking at the implications that Gmail's new service will mean for businesses.

Guy Hanson, director of email services at dbg and a member of the DMA's Email Marketing Council, welcomed Google's priority inbox system, saying it would "force email marketers away from the 'scattergun' approach to mass broadcast and encourage them to use best practice".

"Sending email based on data insight such as previous purchase behaviour or customer profile will increase their relevance and mean organisations are providing email communications that people want to interact with. The reward for this will be better inbox positioning with less competition," he said.