Lee Odden

Ask Morphs into Ask3D

ask.com 3d

Ask.com has upgraded to a new interface called, Ask3D. The 3D makes reference to the three panels of information on the search results page. Ask X was the development playground for Ask3D and includes some interesting features including the display of search results from specialized data sources that are unique to the query.

At first glance, the big difference between Ask X and Ask3D is the initial interface. Ask X is a search box and nothing else. Ask3D provides categories for Web, Images, Ask City, News, Blogs and the extras: video, maps and shopping. The search results page is very similar with 3 columns.


There are a number of improvements including the binoculars function showing larger preview images, one click saving to your Ask favorites and in some cases, the ability to play video clips from the third column search results.

I think this is a great effort from Ask and the user experience and aesthetics are a big improvement. The variety of search results sources from the specialty data bases is great, but some of the results in the 3rd column, especially video, have a ways to go in terms of relevancy.

Thanks to Gary Price for the heads up and I hope IAC and Ask continue to work on improvements.

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Lee Odden About Lee Odden

@LeeOdden is the CEO of TopRank Marketing and editor of Online Marketing Blog. Cited for his expertise by The Economist, Forbes and the Wall Street Journal, he's the author of the book Optimize and presents internationally on B2B marketing topics including content, search, social media and influencer marketing. When not at conferences, consulting, or working with his talented team, he's likely running, traveling or cooking up something new.


  1. Looks like ask is stepping up to their advertising campaigns. This looks somewhat similar to Google’s Universal search. I wonder what effect this will have on Ask’s market position. Do you really see them stepping up and becoming a big player in the search market, or even possibly rising to rival Google?

  2. I think this upgrade is a big improvement from a usability standpoint, but Ask will need to continue to work on it. With more attention in the press (not just advertising) I think they could be a worthy MSN competitor. In fact, I like Ask.com’s search MUCH better than Microsoft Live right now.

  3. Avatar Thomas McMahon says

    Nice iPhone like buttons. 🙂

  4. Glad to see that blogs are included to rival google

  5. They could probably use to upgrade the look of the SERPs, the landing page is really nice and clean, but again the SERPs are still cluttered.

  6. To be honest, it doesn’t look like much of a morph to me. I think they got way too much attention over this.

  7. Ohhh, so skeptical Michael. Compared to the daily coverage from Google lemmings in the media, Ask received next to no attention on this update.

  8. You’re right, Lee. They don’t get much coverage. But I’d like to see something truly substantial come out of Ask. They just don’t seem to be living up to their potential. I suppose they don’t appreciate my saying so, but standing outside the Algorithm, looking in, that is how it appears to me. They need to reach out more. I could do with fewer singing, dancing girls, no more guys in bath tubs snarking at the neighbors, and more with “Hey, we’re doing this for our users” stuff.

    But maybe that’s just me.

  9. I happen to agree that it would be great to see more from Ask, because if they want to move out of 4th place, they’ll need to stop acting like a 4th place engine.

  10. Avatar Business Education says

    I don’t think ask.com create big improvement. ask3d simply put together 3 search engine into 1 search. the engine itself do not change at all. One of the reason people come to Google is the level of relevance result. Google right now can give the most relevance result to user.

    Ask3d is much more want to spoiled the user with more user friendly.

  11. What a great timesaver! Focusing in and collecting info made simple and easy. Wish this would have been up and running when I was in college.


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