While the web is a place to search for information – and search sites originally conceived of the internet as primarily info aggregation – our content has evolved. Image searches now provide better and more beautiful results (partially thanks to improving digital camera technology), videos are a part of almost every internet user’s daily routine, and more and more of us have become contributors to the media content on the web. Google (and competitors) have worked hard to developed their media search capabilities, and two recent updates from Google bring more of the media features into the core SERP.
That SERP (the search engine results page) has been adapting to include more media content for quite some time, with images and videos being a part of the displayed results for several years now. What’s different is that users can now interact with the content more fully and are likely to see more of it.
Here’s a brief summary of the additions:
- Users will now see a “tiled” version of images on the SERP that mirrors the updates made several months ago to Google Image Search. Users can hover over an image to see a larger version and get more details on the picture.
- When users seem to be looking for images (for example, including “pics,” “pictures,” or “images” in the search query), Google will provide up to three rows of image content. Each row contains four to eight tiled images, so users will get a very strong representation of the media content available.
- The “Instant Preview” feature that lets users look at sites before they click on the content now also allows for video previews to be played. The previews let you play five-second snippets from different starting points in the video content.
Users in the U.S. can enjoy these features immediately. The updates will be rolled out globally in the next upcoming month.