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Yahoo adds photos to recipe, shopping search results

The Web giant tweaks its search results, creating a new ribbon of photos in results for recipes and product queries.

The new look at Yahoo for results from a "turkey recipe" search.

Yahoo is tweaking its search experience today, creating a new ribbon near the top of results with photos and interactive elements for queries about recipes and shopping.

Now, when someone types in "turkey recipe," for example, they'll see a selection of recipes with photos that they can scroll through above the more traditional links, which will continue to show up. Yahoo figures that when users search for recipes, their intent is pretty clear. So it wants to present them with information they can use more quickly.

"We're focused on giving our users answers, not links," said Caroline Tsay, senior director of search management at Yahoo.

From those recipe results, users can then filter by ingredients. They can also go to a new recipe search page, which allows them to refine their query even more, selecting a specific type of diet, for example, such as vegetarian or diabetic.

A similar looking ribbon pops up when users type in queries related to product searches. Type in "digital camera," for example, and the ribbon displays a variety of cameras available from online retailers. Users can filter those results, from inside the ribbon, limiting to, say, point-and-shoot cameras.

Results for typical entertainment queries, such as a movie title, won't produce a ribbon. But the look of results has been tweaked to surface the content that users seek most often. Moviegoers, for example, can quickly find theaters and showtimes. When fans type in an actor's name, a selection of photos pops up on the right side of the results. And they can select from news stories and Tweets about the actor elsewhere on the page.

The new results come from Yahoo's content index, not from advertisers. That's key because the results that include search advertising are provided by Microsoft's Bing search engine. To the extent that Yahoo receives revenue from the results in the new search elements--from the shopping queries, for example--it keeps all of that money.

The new search elements are only available in the United States for now, though Yahoo plans to roll out the features more broadly over time.