Internet, August 17, 2011. Yandex launches a new search platform Reykjavík. The new version delivers search results based on the user’s language preferences. It displays more links to English-language websites among search results for those users who often look for web resources in English, and, conversely, those who do not need search results in English, won’t see them. This is the company’s first step toward personalized search.
“According to our stats, most people prefer receiving answers to their queries in their own language. But there are also those who deliberately want the answers in English,” says Denis Raskovalov, head of Search Quality Development at Yandex. “It took a lot of experimenting for us to find the best way to satisfy the needs of both groups of our users. In the end, we decided to teach our search engine how to take into consideration and adapt to users’ language preferences.”
Reykjavík responds only to search queries in English. It filters out transliterated searches in Russian, web addresses, keyboard layout errors etc. At the same time, Reykjavík also accounts for searches like [beatles] or [rothko] which might not necessarily require results in English. The new search platform delivers results based on how often the user follows links to English-language websites.
Ranking its search results, Reykjavík uses the information about the user’s demand for websites in English. Those who do need them will see links to these websites among top search results. According to the stats from Yandex’s new search platform, about 8% users of Yandex prefer search results in English.