One of the more interesting pieces of buzz that is coming down the line is the talk about page previews that are taking place within the SERP’s of Google. Google appears to be doing a trial run with UK users where a mouse over of the title on a search result will reveal a preview of the page in a small popup on the right side of the SERPs – see below:
The initial reaction was that people assumed they had somehow picked up a browser application or something similar but it’s easily visible without any special software installation to view the previews.
The feature is extremely slick, and one of the most interesting aspects is that the preview will specifically highlight an area of the web page in order to view the area that is most relevant to your search. It’s always been a little frustrating to get served a result but have to dig for your search results in a longer list of content once you make it to the site.
Once the feature is running full steam ahead it will likely eliminate a lot of situations where people click into a link only to discover that the content doesn’t interest them. As Google is still opening the site to some extent, it’s not apparent how this is going to affect analytics.
It does make one wonder how many people will gauge a site as they preview the content. This makes me feel as if I would be standing in the video store flipping DVD cases to quickly scan both the cover and the pictures on the back to decide if I like the movie enough to watch it. Users may very well be gauging their access to a site on the condensed preview they see in the SERPs.
It’s always been a good idea to have a professional site design that can help you build rapport with a target and this is one of those times when you better hope your design is enough to catch the attention of the user alongside your title so that you actually drag them in.
For those people who launched content sites featuring 90% ads and 10% content, I pity the impact this may have on traffic to those pages.
I highly doubt this will have any profound impact on SEO but it will force marketers to take a closer look at how their sites and landing pages are viewed in a quick condensed format. Button down those sales funnels gentleman, it’s time to tweak again.
To Your Success,
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