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Monday, October 18, 2010

Google Testing Website Previews in Search Results

Posted by @ 5:58 pm

Just a few weeks after successfully launching Google Instant, reports from all over the web world are pouring in that the tech giant is already testing their next possible product: A full page image preview of target websites with blue backgrounds hovering over search results if you scroll over them.

A page preview of the webpage pops up on the side of the search result page with certain section of highlighted text relevant to the search query and by clicking on this image you will be taken to the full website.

Here is an example of how the My Voucher Codes website appears in the preview.

The fact that the highlighted text is relevant to the search result shows that Google has the technology to bring out the exact piece of text on every single web page indexed for the search terms.

Its worth noting that the full details of a longer web pages will not be shown in the preview, the page will be cut off at a certain point. This gives even more weight to the rule that all the important information on your webpage should be above the fold.

This testing is not be confused with the thumbnail previews that Google introduced about a year ago as a search option (available in the left hand options bar).

Google is yet to confirm if this just a test or if Google plans to roll this out to all their users. When Mashable approached Google about it a spokesperson simply said: “At any given time we are running between 50-200 search experiments”. Clearly Google is giving nothing away!

Page Preview could dramatically affect click through rates as we will get to see the effect of web page designs has on converting searches into visitors.

As a daily Google searcher, I would love this feature to become a staple in the Google search results. The layout and design of a website plays quite a role in determining if I am going to purchase from the site or not.

Courtney Mills Courtney is an online marketing and communications specialist at ineedhits - a leading search engine marketing firm with over 16 years experience. Courtney has been living and breathing online marketing for over 5 years. She specializes in web and communication marketing, while providing news and opinion to online marketing communities.

View Courtney Mills's profile

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