Russian-based search engine Yandex announced a revolutionary way for users to interact with the search results, giving them the ability to buy movie tickets, check flight status, make restaurant reservations, pay bills and more, without ever leaving the results page or clicking through to a site.
“Islands” is the name Yandex gave to its interactive snippets, which evolved from the concept of rich snippets, and gives site owners the ability to add various functionality of their choosing.
“Islands has been designed to provide a new level of user experience, responding to web searches with solutions rather than just information,” Yandex said in a statement. “As such, it will speed up the link between searches and services, minimizing the risk of organizations losing business through lengthy search processes or complicated web pages.”
Yandex also said Islands puts the power in site owner’s hands, and that it “does not mean Yandex will decide what information appears on the search page; that will be determined by the website owner who will be able to choose whether he or she wants to include interactive snippets, and if so, what they should look like.”
That means, marketers and site owners will have to anticipate the needs of their users, and prioritize the most important actions in the search results through the use of Islands.
The following demonstrates the evolution of rich snippets, and the power of the new functionality with Islands:
Islands does not yet support English, and is now live in Turkey with plans to roll out in Russia, Ukraine, Belarus and Kazakhstan in the coming months.
For more, you can check out this rather theatrical introduction to Islands: