Aside from a new colour scheme and sharper, cleaner look, Google has significantly changed the way users navigate its search results by adding more images into results as well as a Bing-like navigation column down the left-hand side of the page.
"This new side panel highlights the most relevant search tools and refinements for your query. Over the past three years, we’ve launched Universal Search, the Search Options panel and Google Squared, and it’s those three technologies that power the left-hand panel," said Marissa Mayer, VP Search Products and User Experience, on the official Google Blog.
The left-hand column has several options for navigating to the optimum results, including diving into sections such as Books, Images or Videos, narrowing down results by timeline and changing how results are viewed. Rather than the standard view, users can choose from related searches, a timeline representing dates the content was published and the ‘Wonder Wheel’, which visually connects related concepts, allowing users to click through from the central keyword to related ones that surround it.
Mayer says that the changes were tested with users over the past few months, with the final changes unveiled yesterday, reflecting the feedback Google has received.
A mobile version of this makeover for Google search s already available in the US and no date has been announced for rolling it out to other countries as of yet.
By Marie Boran
Photo: The new-look Google search results page