Today search engine giant Google is releasing a new feature on their searches called Instant Previews. What this does is allows consumers to get a snapshot view of what a website looks like without having to visit the page. They believe that by giving a sample view of the site before you click into it will help consumers to to find what they are looking for quicker and easier than having to click through various links. Personally, I think that this new feature will help websites to lower bounce rate as consumers can get a good feel of what the site is about without ever having to click into it. If you wonder what it looks like, here is a screenshot:
So How Does This Effect My Site?
I am glad you asked! I think that Google Instant Previews is going to cause us all to do some minor adjustments to our sites. The first thing I think this is going to cause us all to do is look at the current website design/layout we have and determine if it is truly attractive enough to entice consumers to want to view. If your site is 7 years old and is plain and boring, it might be time to upgrade to a new custom WordPress site. If you site is more appealing than the others in the preview window, you have a better chance of the consumer clicking in to your page.
Secondly, I see the use of pictures on your posts and pages becoming even more critical. I talked about the importance of photos and labeling them properly before for SEO purposes, but this takes it all to a whole new level. Now not only are the pictures important for SEO, but they are also extremely important to the visual appeal of your site. I once heard that adding just 2 photos to a blog post can increase the time on your page by up to 300%! Now not only will this help keep the consumer there, but these photos will actually help to bring them in.
The final piece that I see Google Instant Previews changing is the effectiveness of Ads run on Google. If you notice in my screenshot above, the preview window basically covers the entire sidebar of ads. I think that this will really cut down on the number of clicks that the ads receive. Thus making CPC and CPM advertising not as effective as it has been in the past simply because the ads are being covered over by the giant preview window. This also means that having a good online presence in search engine rankings is becoming even more important. Getting to page 1 is crucial for your keywords.
What Do I Need To Do?
So in closing, what should you be doing to help your site with this new feature? First and foremost, look at the sites design and appeal. Does your site have very clear call to action buttons installed? If not, you need to get them there ASAP. As you can see from the screenshot to the right, The calls to action are very clear. People can see at a quick glance what the site offers and what they want you to do on it. Secondly, the site has a very clean and clear look to it. The images are bold and easy to see. Seeing something like this would make me want to click in and view.
Next, make sure you are using plenty of photos in everything you do on your site. It is not only important for SEO, but now more than ever is going to be important on bringing in consumers to view the content of your site. On the other hand, I know someone is thinking right now, “I’m gonna go put 27 photos all over my site because Jeremy said photos will make more people come.” STOP IT NOW! That is not what I am saying. All things are good in moderation. Add one to two photos per page and it will be appealing. Add 27 photos to a page and you have major chaos. Keep it simple and easy.
So, take some time look at your site and get things prepared for Google Instant Previews. If your site needs a facelift, let us know, we would be glad to design a custom WordPress site for you.