Where Did Cached Pages Go On Google?

Since Google launched the new instant previews just about a month ago, the question we have seen come up from searchers time and time again is “where did the cached page go?”

Yes, Google has moved the “cached” and “similar” links from near the display URL in the search results and to the instant preview section.

To see it yourself, when you conduct a search, mouse over the search result and you should see a little bar and arrow show up on the right of the search result snippet. Either hold it there or click on it:

When you click on it, a preview of the page will open up to the right:

In there is the “cached” and “similar” link that you thought went missing.

Here is a picture of the old cached link:

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Related Topics: Channel: SEO | Google: Instant | Google: User Interface | Google: Web Search

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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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  • http://www.blazenwebmarketing.co.uk Mark Reynolds

    Hi Barry, back in August I documented this ‘Cached’ link change when I noticed Google’s testing of the new Instant Previews. Moving it is definitely a good move by Google, in my opinion it helps to get rid of a bit more clutter around the results and focus people’s attention on the text that matters. The majority of Google users must wonder what this ‘pointless’ link is anyway!! Majority meaning not us ;-)

  • http://about.me/jordangodbey Jordan Godbey

    Funny you should mention that at the end of your post Mark — I was thinking to myself, I’ve clicked on the similar and cached links before, but more out of curiosity.

    What do SEO uses these links for and are they very valuable to the practice? If they were to be totally removed, what would we no longer be able to do/see?

    Thanks

    Jordan

  • http://www.blazenwebmarketing.co.uk Mark Reynolds

    Hi Jordan, one general use of the cached link is that you can view a version of a page even if the website you’re trying to visit is down. Another general use is to highlight the text on the page so that you can find what you’re looking for fast. The new instant previews could go a bit towards doing the same thing.

    The cached link can be useful to see the web page as it looked when Google last indexed it. So to webmasters/SEOs it can be useful to pinpoint any issues with your website, or a specific page. Within the cached page there’s also a text only version which shows you all the text that Google indexed, so you can compare what humans see to what the search engines see.

    Google says: “The “Cached” link won’t appear for sites that haven’t been indexed or for any sites whose owners requested that we refrain from caching their content.”

  • Steven757

    You know I am always amazed at how people that feel they are Big Wigs put down everybody else. I say this because I for one have used CACHED results almost every time I search for something.

    Why? Because Sellers and other web designers what the people that visit their site to have to scroll through tons of other information that they are not looking for. Having the words that are in your search highlighted greatly speeds up how fast you can finf the information you are looking for.

    Google has jumped on the >make it harder to quickly find what you are looking for< by doing things such as showint sited that may have only 1 of your search words and-or may have only part of a word or number you are searching for. The result is 100's more sited popping up that have absolutely none of the information you are searching for. Naking a user go to an Instant Preview to use the Cached results forces the user to see another mini page that they may not want to see.

    Last, if I cannot see a Cached version of a site that has lots of other things on it, I just dump the page instead of wasting time to scroll through it. That's their loss, not mine if they won't let me find information quickly.

  • Steven757

    I apologize for the typos in my post above. I would have edited it but there seems to be no way to do that here.

    Not to mention how hard it is to decipher the code words to post so you can enter them correctly.

  • http://twitter.com/gfanucci George Fanucci

    The “Hover for Cache Link and Preview” seems NOT to be working anymore.  The ONLY way to get to see the cache is to search for a page and use the “cache:” operator in the search . . Yet another huge step backwards for Google?  I tried Chrome, Firefox, and Safari on MacOS X 10.6. 

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