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Google promotes Froogle

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A user interface revamp at Google has seen its shopping comparison service Froogle promoted to pride of place on the main page. It takes the place of Google's Directory, based on data from the Open Directory Project.

Froogle made its debut as a labs project fifteen months ago, and is labeled as a Beta. Don't read too much into that: Google News is permanently in Beta too. Froogle has some way to go and needs merchants, fast. A search for "Apple Powerbook" yielded 1,460 results. But only a few were for Apple Powerbooks, all the results were from the same merchant (buy-anything-online.com) and all items - including Flash Drives and Toshibas were priced at exactly $2,848.50. Which suggests that either it's been gamed already, or needs to have a few bugs ironed out.

Google has also introduced a personalized search - you enter areas of interest first - and an alerts service, similar to the popular third-party Google Alerts service, which uses the Google API. The UI revamp now gives more room to advertisements on its results pages, but has made these harder to click accidentally.

But what you probably want to know is how you can bump a page to the top of Google and Yahoo's results using only five domains. We'll explain this soon. ®

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