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Google piloting AI-powered shopping searches

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Google is applying next-gen artificial intelligence (AI) capabilities in Google Search to help consumers find products.

In a test, Google is integrating new generative AI functionality into its search engine. Based on machine learning (ML), generative AI can create new content and ideas, including conversations, stories, images, videos, and music. This means consumers will be able to conduct online searches by asking conversational questions.

Context will be carried over from question to question, to help consumers more naturally continue their search. Search results will also provide jumping-off points to web content and different perspectives.

For shopping-related searches, generative AI will provide a variety of factors to consider and relevant products. Results will also include product descriptions that include up-to-date reviews, ratings, prices and product images.

[Read more: Google makes images, search results shoppable]

Google built its new generative AI shopping experience on its Shopping Graph, a real-time, AI-based dataset of products, inventory, and retailers with more than 35 billion listings. Every hour, more than 1.8 billion listings are refreshed in the Google Shopping Graph.

Search ads will continue to appear in dedicated ad slots throughout the results page. Google said it will continue making sure that search ads are distinguishable from organic search results.

Google is launching its generative AI search initiative with a pilot in Search Labs, its new program that lets consumers sign up to test new products and ideas the tech giant is working on. Participants will be able to try out some early-stage experiments, and share their feedback directly with the teams working on them. 

The generative AI Search Labs pilot is called SGE (Search Generative Experience), available on Chrome desktop and the Google Android and iOS app the U.S. (English-only at launch). Google plans to incorporate feedback from the pilot in its effort to continue to improve the experience over time.

We know that people want to hear insights from others to help inform their decisions, so we’ve designed these new experiences to highlight and drive attention to content on the web, making it easy for people to dive deeper on the topic they’re learning about.,” said Elizabeth Reid, VP & GM, Search for Google in a corporate blog post.

“As we bring generative AI into search, we’re committed to continue sending valuable traffic to sites across the web.”

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