Google launched a new version of its Product Search page today that’s far more visually driven than any of its other search pages.
With the new Product Search site, it seems like Google has finally realized that retail store windows displays are an effective means of selling products.
The visuals came from Boutiques.com, a site focused on shopping for women that was created by the team behind Google-acquired site Like.com. Google plans to shut down its Boutiques site October 14 and will instead concentrate on improving its new Product Search page, the company said.
The new design is the first in a series of new changes “leveraging the computer vision and machine learning technology developed by the team we affectionately call our fashion and computer nerds,” said Like.com co-founder and Google Commerce team member Burak Gokturk in a blog post.
The top of the page is dominated with a slideshow widget that scrolls through five large images. While there are noticeably fewer words on the page, Google does include short text descriptions for each product to the left of the images. Just below that are a few rows of featured products — just as you’d expect to see on a retail store’s homepage.
Users aren’t restricted to text-based search queries either. The new Product Search page lets you shop for visually similar items. For instance, shopping for a dress using this method would show you collections that match the color, silhouette and style.
I’m not sure how this would translate to all product searches (consumer electronics, for instance), but certainly anything that’s based on style rather than function could benefit.