Google: We Removed Instant Previews Over Low Usage From Searchers

Google Instant PreviewsYesterday we reported that Google changed how you access the cached, similar and share links within the search results by adding a new green down arrow next to the search snippet’s URL.

We asked, where did the Instant Previews go that launched on November 9, 2010 with a huge amount of excitement from Google. Google even said that the instant previews resulted in searchers being “5% more likely to be satisfied with the results they click.”

Well, that is now gone because searchers apparently did not use the feature.

A Google spokesperson told us a blanket statement, “we’re constantly making changes to the layout and features of the search results page.” Yes they are, but why did they remove Instant Previews? The real reason, as I discovered in a Google help thread, is because searchers did not use it.

Google’s Jessica from the forums said:

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.

Related Entries:

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

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About The Author: is Search Engine Land's News Editor and owns RustyBrick, a NY based web consulting firm. He also runs Search Engine Roundtable, a popular search blog on very advanced SEM topics. Barry's personal blog is named Cartoon Barry and he can be followed on Twitter here. For more background information on Barry, see his full bio over here.

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  • Alan

    Wouldn’t be because it was distracting users from clicking on ads? Sorry but nearly everything Google does these days has a monetary aspect and I am pretty sure this will also. Remember they are moving towards a leaner and meaner Google now. Think they were Danny’s words but I could be wrong.

  • ronniesmustache

    As a searcher, the preview was great.

    But I guess it obscured too much of Google’s KG & Adwords space.

  • http://vpnverge.com/ VPN Verge

    Finally, its gone.

  • http://www.facebook.com/caroline.mutch Caroline Mutch

    I used this feature every day at work and spent an hour trying to figure out what happened when it just disappeared with no warning. I’m upset they took the feature away and more upset that there was no message as to when or why beforehand.

  • http://twitter.com/JungleRU Jungle
  • http://www.simonsiabod.com/ Carnedd Jack

    Has Google simply given up on user-friendly search? Has it got more lucrative plans in mind? Is this a rhetorical question?

  • http://www.facebook.com/mike.meiresonne.1 Mike Meiresonne

    aren’t the preview ads still being used by google local showing google+ ads?

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