Confirmed: Google Moving Search Options Above Results

Google Logo - StockThat test many of you have been seeing where Google shows its search options above the search results instead of on the left? It’s not a test anymore.

Google has just confirmed that all U.S. searchers will soon be getting the new interface — one that highly resembles Google’s mobile search results pages. Options to search verticals like Images, News and Maps are moved from the left-side of the page up above the top search results. Here’s how the new interface looks, from a screenshot Google provided in its blog post:


The advanced search tools and filters are available under the “Search tools” option on the right.

Google says it plans to introduce the new interface outside the U.S. to other areas and languages “as soon as we can.”

Related Topics: Channel: Consumer | Google: User Interface | Google: Web Search | Top News


About The Author: is Editor-In-Chief of Search Engine Land. His news career includes time spent in TV, radio, and print journalism. His web career continues to include a small number of SEO and social media consulting clients, as well as regular speaking engagements at marketing events around the U.S. He recently launched a site dedicated to Google Glass called Glass Almanac and also blogs at Small Business Search Marketing. Matt can be found on Twitter at @MattMcGee and/or on Google Plus. You can read Matt's disclosures on his personal blog.

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  • Jaan Kanellis

    The search engine is now becoming a portal/website. We all knew this was coming right?

  • Pete

    Looks like a cleaner user experience. Any thoughts from Search Engine Land on the implications for site owners?

    I like that there are fewer distractions to take away from the results themselves.

  • rmonitor

    I think it pushes results down just a fraction, so paid results / shopping results get closer to center stage .. perfect for the shopping season quarter. Interesting to think what they plan to do with the left column now. Google+, Twitter realtime perhaps?

  • igl00

    more clicks for top adwords as a mistake but make google get $

  • Sergiu Draganus

    Any of you having problems finding the change Location Setting on the new Google Layout ?

  • Gael Breton

    Knowledge graph+ads anyone? :)

  • Nathaniel Bailey

    Google must have missed out the adverts on the left in their screenshot!

    Lol I mean do you think google might use the space on the left for ads or is it just going to stay blank for a while? That is until the people at google think its time to sell more adverts in the new blank space!

    Call me cynical, but I wouldn’t put it past google to add an additional adwords area to the left where the menu options use to be!

  • sharithurow

    Hi all,

    For me personally, this is a welcome interface change. This particular layout has tested we’ll on the SERPs we work on.

    For those of you that have site search engines, you might want to give this layout a try.

    Yay Google!

  • Marcus Wong

    Sites that are highly optimized for certain keywords in multiple categories of vertical search will stand a greater chance of dominating search results. If google has been favouring the big companies, would this spell even more bad news for the tiny players?

  • Edwin Romero

    You can find it under search tools as well as search settings.

  • Pano Kondoyiannis

    More space for ads. Google want to earn more money from clicking in ads

  • Josh

    Why worry about side-bar adverts when you can simply embed them within the organic 10? Makes sense to me. Expand 10 to 15 and include 5 PPC’s in there. Bingo. $$$

  • Kudret Çayıroğlu


  • Larry Kim
  • Kevin Gallagher

    I think is more what easier for users and perhaps even mobile. If the test showed people didn’t like it then I believe they would not be doing it. Thus not motivated by $

  • Jeff Downer Indianapolis IN

    I’m thinking wouldn’t it be nice if Google donated all that newly available space to charity.

  • Larry Kim

    I agree with shari- that there are some nice UX benefits of the layout.
    But, as is the case with many of google’s announcements, there may be
    other underlying reasons. Kind of like how when google started doing
    “keyword not provided” they said it was to protect and ensure user
    privacy (but many people think there were other reasons behind the
    change).in addition to the stated UX objective, i think that the new
    page may monetize better for paid search, in that the ads are now closer
    to the left, that it frees up more space for the huge double-wide
    product listing ads, and the query refinement tools are now directly on
    top of the ads, etc.

  • Frank Watson

    starting to look more like Ask – they should buy it

  • keaner

    its been like this on my tablet for ages, no change here.

  • keaner

    This works on mobile but is absolutely horrible for Desktop.

  • daveintheuk

    Another day, and Google shifts organic search results just that little bit further off the screen. I think now is a good time to stop calling Google a search engine, and start calling it an internet portal.

  • Ajay Jhunjhunwala

    So Google is experimenting this new layout with
    countries other than US. :) Making other countries a thing for experiment or
    survey? Or any other technical issues, i don’t know. But will Google utilize
    the left side bar space with ads?? If Google wants to earn money from there, no
    problem Google deserved. If not, then no justification of such change.

  • Alan

    Eventually there will be ads! based on their own heatmap modelling the left hand side is the best place to put ads. So I doubt they will be leaving it blank for too long

  • Lorenzo Reffo

    Left column = image ads Facebook style? ;)
    Btw I like it more on the top :)

  • Christine

    Fit the look on mobile, i think.

  • Terry

    It used to take me 2 clicks to get to the time frame I wanted displayed, now it takes me 4 and I keep opening the wrong darned option the first time. :(

  • Doug Tull

    This is a move to make scarce real estate even more valuable. This will probably boost AdWords bids.

  • jonathan

    I think its probably a good thing what with windows 8 using the sides for loads of things

  • Kristel

    Much better interface! Search tools are much more visible this time.

  • Jerry Nordstrom

    Pandalize – Excellent Hernan I love a good bit of Paronomasia to start the day. And I agree with your view on ASK and Google’s drive for profits above experience.

  • Green Apple

    I like the new interface – neat and clean. I wonder what huge white space on the left will become

  • San Diego SEO Consultant

    I think this interface makes Google look more like a website than a search portal, ain’t it? And when you include the ads, it just looks cluttered. Makes you miss that simple, clean Google search page we all knew before.

  • jaa09 lucernas
  • AnaliticoToronto

    Google has changed the layout for YouTube as well for some users. have a look at this screenshot

  • steve

    The image search has far fewer functions, rendering it mostly useless as a tool. I regularly require PR images, which are often online. Image now only offers me ‘large’, and not the previous size-specifics (larger than ‘x’ MB). Poor update to take functionality away from users. I’m actually going to try Bing.

  • CandleForex

    Does that mean no more ads on the left?

  • Search Results Media

    I think this interface change will not affect so much. It is just to make the google search interface user friendly

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