New AOL Search beta

The AOL Search team has been working hard to launch a new search product. A sneak peek is available.

The redesign does two big things:

  • Reorganizes the left side, allowing more search results above the fold.
  • Adds a right rail with additional content from a variety of sources, including multimedia results. Try sheryl crow, desperate housewives, nordstrom, bmw and ireland. For these types of searches, the results are much richer than on typical search engines. Of course, not all searches will get the right rail experience.

Give it a try and let me know what you think.


About Rakesh Agrawal

Rakesh Agrawal is Senior Director of product at Amazon (Audible). Previously, he launched local and mobile products for Microsoft and AOL. He tweets at @rakeshlobster.
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20 Responses to New AOL Search beta

  1. Overall, you’ve eliminated a lot of noise. At a 800×600 pixel screen setting (must be at least 50% of your users), you only get the #1 top search result (after sponsored listings) above the fold. I guess that’s better than none with the old layout, but I think it would be great to make lower results more visible.

    One thing I don’t understand is the removal of underlines from links. An underline on text indicates an action, it also creates separation in the text, making the page feel less overwhelming. You are using the “link blue” for each result, but I think the results would be stronger if they were underlined as well.

    My last thought is why force an 800 pixel width on the page? It’s all text and will easily flow to any layout size. I can’t be the only search user that opens a small browser window beside what I’m working on to do a quick search and I’m not interested in having to scroll horizonally to read search results.

  2. Joel Thingvall says:

    Well, the new page comes out ragged, copy not in boxes and such. I hate it and want my old screen back. Or do I need to adjust some settings. Plese advise.

  3. Bob Malinowski says:

    What have you done???? I can’t find anything. Give me my old search back or I’ll be forced to change services just so I can find things.

  4. sharon Gofberg says:

    I hate this screen how do I get back my old welcome screen this is rediculous. I will change my internet provider If you do not switch my old screen back.

  5. Alicia says:

    font to close and to small…

  6. Robin says:

    Sorry Rocky…I hate it !! want the old screen back or something like it.. its too narrow and the placement of format and materials are not too my liking..I want to be able to move my important windows where I want weather is lost in the crowd… the ads and inventory on the page are useless garbage to me.. seems to designed for a much younger group..The MSN.Com page is an all age user friendly wonderful design where you can design your own page according to what’s important to you individually..I’d be seriously looking into that format for making everyone happy.. Iam outta aol if this new format stays.. it’s really lacking a personal touch…. It is awful !!

  7. Robin says:

    new reply.. boy this page is literally hurts my eyes…The top window where search etc is Takes up way too much space the font is way to big and is so unnecessary… The next window with my account, my mail etc is the same …font too big ..takes up way to much space and it is just ridiculous looking..This new screen is insulting to me is literally one big eye sore.. How long do we have to put up with the pathetic home page…??

  8. Hi folks,

    It seems these comments are about the new AOL Welcome Screen for AOL client users, not AOL Search.

    I will pass them on to the people who work on Welcome Screen.

  9. Robin says:

    ok Rocky who do I need to talk to ??

  10. Kathy says:

    I hate it! Plus, I can’t search the way i did – when I search I get a page of results. I click on one and it stays on screen for 3 seconds! The results page returns and I have to close it to access the page I chose. I used to be able to backspace to the results page, but now I lose the results page and have to do a new search! SOOOOOOOOO annoying! I too will switch!!!

  11. JOE F. pECK says:


  12. JOE F. PECK says:



  13. As far as I know, there is no way to change back to the old Welcome Screen.

  14. Lynn says:

    Hate the new welcome screen. Can’t see weather without expanding box–not convenient. Feel like I need glasses looking at this mess.

  15. Mary Ann says:

    I’m with the rest of you, who cares if the search has been improved, I’m not going to be on AOL long enough to care anymore. i absolutely HATE the new design, font is too tiny – it strains my eyes to look at it, everything is jumbled together, as one other person here put it it’s a MESS. I used to enjoy reading the features, checking out the slide show etc. now everything is so small and squished together I just want to get out. I’m going to check out MSN if this screen stays. There is a reason for the old saying, ‘If it ain’t broke don’t fix it!” If this is to find room for more ads who will they be aimed at if all your visitors have LEFT??


  16. Long time aol user says:

    I can’t stand the new welcome screen. Please get the old screen back!!!

  17. Dustin E Wilson says:

    I HATE! this new screen….i have had AOL for 4 years and i have NEVER had problems with them (like this anyways) until now and im still trying to figure out how to change my welcome screen back and the first time this started was a couple weeks ago and when i signed off then back on l8r it was fine and now it wont go away & im like what the heck?

  18. Michelle says:

    OK, we all agree, this new welcome screen is awful! What can we do about it?? I hate it, my IM font is sooo tiny, half of my welcome screen cannot be viewed & some other sights are too big to see all of, as well! Aggghhh, someone, make it stop!

  19. lace says:

    I like how aol used to be. With the just the buddy list on one side and the search thing on the side and a small welcome screen in the middle. what the heck happened and how do I change it back?

  20. I’d forever want to be update on new articles on this website , saved to my bookmarks ! .

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