Google has made a big change to the way its search feature is used internationally — or rather, the way users can perform international searches. Before now, users could navigate to a different country’s Google domain, like google.co.jp for Japan or www.google.com.au for Australia, and in turn get search results specific to that location. That’s no longer the case, as the company says users will now get results based on their current location regardless of the domain they search from.
In other words, if someone is in Los Angeles and uses google.co.uk to try to get UK-based local results, they’ll still get results relevant to L.A. Google explains that it has a somewhat good reason for making this change, but fortunately there’s still a way for users to get results based on another location. They’ll just need to navigate to the setting menu, found at the bottom of the Google homepage (both on desktop and mobile), and choose a new location.
Google says that the change was made because of the importance of location related searches these days, which now account for one in five searches. “Providing locally relevant search results is an essential part of serving you the most accurate information,” the company writes. This is emphasized in the case of travelers, where users will automatically get local results for the country they’re visiting, and then return to seeing results based on their home when they return.
Services like Gmail and YouTube have already worked like this, Google notes, adding that the change is now live for both desktop and mobile searches, along with Google Maps and Google’s iOS app.
SOURCE Google Blog