Potentially a response to Bing citing how they are a decision engine, there have been reports that Google users are seeing a magnifying glass next to search results and these provide a site preview. Bing has this in principle, more with a summary of the site, however Google’s is a site preview with highlighted relevant content expanded as a site blurb:
This is likely to keep users on Google if they are able to find the answer without clicking away. The preview window, also crucially, may cover Adwords ads.
As a part of the evolving search engine, it seems this preview will require very high bandwidth just as
Google Instant does.
For web design, this means the home page or whichever link is displayed must be completely optimized to keywords of high SEO value but also looks easy to navigate and find information. Users will be able to make the click through decision with a preview, e.g. for a travel insurance purchase site, users may find the preview which shows a ‘Get A Quote’ button less desirable than a site which has a quote form in the preview.
And how does this compare to Bing? Well, if rolled out, it pips Bing to the post if they were planning to do this – expanding on a feature they have half-heartedly added to their search functionality. It also keeps the decision-making on the Google search page which is advantageous to Google. The Bing preview does not facilitate the decision to be made on the engine and still necessitates a click.
I haven’t seen this feature in my Google, have you? What do you think?