In an effort to delve further into the social media landscape, Google (GOOG) is launching its version of Facebook’s “Like” feature on web searches, allowing users to highlight and share certain pages with G-chat and e-mail buddies.
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Google, which has been criticized for its lack of social media savvy, rolled out the new +1 button in an experimental fashion alongside search results on Wednesday for certain users.
The feature comes a year after Facebook began offering its “Like” buttons to websites, which provides those pages with a personalized recommendation system that some have said could challenge the traditional search engine method of web search.
Google, which saw $29 billion in revenue last year from search ads, said it intends to roll out the feature to third-party websites. While it is not using the data right now for ranking purposes, it is determining whether that could be implemented in the future.
The +1 buttons will also appear in the paid ads that Google displays alongside its search results, which the company has said helps boost the rate consumers click on advertisements.
In order to use the feature, users must create a Google Profile page. Their +1 recommendations will only be displayed to Google contacts through email and messaging.