Development of low-coverage search experiences for information about trees, food, planets, etc.
Ask Search leadership asked our editorial team to identify and develop “low hanging fruit” reference-type content as part of a competitive parity initiative. In some cases, we took content that had already been curated for standard search features and turned it into expanded right-side “Knowledge Graph”-style elements.
Process For existing content, this was effectively a UX or template migration: the content was there, it just needed to be moved to a different format. Trees and food nutrition facts were two good examples. The only trick was that the images already curated weren’t large or high quality enough to serve as a large “hero”-type banner image, so I took advantage of Yahoo subsidiary, Flickr, which has a search-based API that let us serve only Creative Commons-licensed user images.
Result Though these efforts did not represent high-volume queries, the effort did not go unnoticed by leadership, and it also served as an opportunity for less experienced team members to build their skills and flex creative muscle.
Created rich search experiences to feature Yahoo Screen originals alongside knowledge graph.
When Yahoo Screen made its foray into full-length original TV series with Community and others, we were ready to go in search. I made sure that the latest episodes carousel had excellent coverage and TV Series Knowledge Graph contained accurate, detailed profiles.
Built special “vertical search” feature to support new property launches and reduce maintenance.
Yahoo launched several new media verticals called “Magazines” and did not migrate any corresponding vertical search experiences, which were based on an older platform. Instead, a search product manager was tasked with adding vertical content to web search, filtered according to the user’s site of origin, and they enlisted my support to create and launch the necessary features in our search content management platform.
Each query sent from a search box included more than just the user’s query–it contained referral information, usually unique to the property or even page. I used this information to determine when a search experience should appear, as well as pass variables to a backend. The news backend, which indexed news from hundreds of sources worldwide, including Yahoo’s own sites, could return articles matching any query, filtered by property and sorted by freshness.
Expanding on a template design already in use for news results in general web search, I created a “vertical search” feature that included up to 10 results with thumbnails for each and paginated results if there were more than 10 stories matching a given query. This large search feature appeared on top of the usual web algorithmic links and any other non-monetized search features.
Product owners also asked for Magazine stories to be highlighted in web search results (in a less aggressive form, of course). I created simple “navigational” features with a max of 3 stories to appear on searches by Magazine name and featured writers to satisfy their primary need. Because Magazine stories were indexed along with all news content, these stories could appear in regular news search results without any extra effort.
“Emily always brings a number of ideas and potential solutions to a problem, but will back them up with execution reliably, quickly, and self-sufficiently, and manages dependencies deftly and efficiently. When tasked to launch international Magazine Search in Q4, Emily took the lead, coordinating with int’l editorial leads, offering assistance where necessary, and following up to ensure completion, ensuring the appropriate Product approvals (from me) and transparency of communication. The task was completed successfully, quickly, and helped ensure a Green rating on that quarterly goal.”
Product Manager, Vertical Search
No-maintenance, low-effort vertical search launched on all new Magazines. Sites and big-name authors were effectively promoted in web search.
Planning and deployment of election-related search experiences to lead users to reliable information on commonly searched queries.
Factchecked quotes from the Politifact Truth-O-Meter.Where candidates stand on the issues, with researched positions from ProCon.org and “explore related” suggested queries manually curated.
I was approached by search product teams working on distinct experiences around the then-upcoming 2016 U.S. primary election to offer feedback on proposed designs and organize editorial efforts in content curation and quality validation.
Led team effort to develop detailed list of potential features along with timeline, content source(s), and priority. Features based on team knowledge and real user search data/query patterns.
Researched content sources for features that would be relevant in early 2016 (general politics, candidate research). Key requirements included high-quality, politically neutral data; structured in a way that was compatible with our content management platform; served in XML or JSON format or able to be extracted and converted to usable form.
Joined product team meetings to give updates on content development and share feedback on whether design matched real content and user needs.
Created and launched experiences on web search and provided support for other platforms using our work.
By February 2016, we launched several features on web search:
Presidential candidate knowledge graph, incorporating party affiliation, donation data from OpenSecrets.org, polling data, and political office history.
Latest quotes with “truthfulness” rating from Politifact for all presidential candidates.
Candidate stances on 20+ key political issues extracted from ProCon.org with manually curated browse element to help search users explore candidate opinions.
Political cartoon of the day.
Additionally, detailed requirements for election results and future election experience ideas were documented.