Mountain View, California–The biggest search engine has made another change to its platform to widen its appeal as the Yahoo Bing Network out performs it in key areas. The Google drop down menu has replaced instant previews in organic search results. The move comes after lackluster performance of instant previews, which recorded little usage by consumers.
Instant previews was largely seen as a bane of search engine optimization during its initial release in late 2010 because it allowed users to see a page before committing to click through. However, consumers didn’t engage the instant previews feature enough for Google to keep supporting it.
Introducing the Google Drop Down Menu
As instant previews has been removed, the company has now debuted the Google drop down menu, which allows consumers to choose from three options: see a cached page, view similar results, or to share a page on the Google+ network. Recently, the search engine also integrated the Plus site with its weblog, Blogger, another move to make its social property more ubiquitous and user friendly.
Now, when consumers perform a search query, the Google drop down menu appears to the right, appended under a small downward pointing arrow. The complete feature isn’t available to all search results, with many queries omitting the “Similar” and/or “Share” options.
Google Drop Down Menu Not the Only Change of Late
In the last quarter of 2010, Google released instant previews, and later added the search feature to its mobile and video results. As consumers hovered their mouse over the organic results, a preview of the page would pop up to the right of the SERP. There was a magnifying glass included, another feature which was updated last in 2011.
“As we’ve streamlined the results page, we’ve had to remove certain features, such as Instant Previews. Instant previews saw very low usage by our users, and we’ve decided to focus on streamlining the page to benefit more users,” according to a Google spokesperson in the Google Search Forum.
The most obvious addition to the Google drop down menu is the integration of the share option for Google Plus, which is likely designed to get more consumers to join the search engine’s proprietary social network. In March, Google+ allowed users to include a GIF image in their profiles. Currently, the search engine is developing new technology in voice activated queries.