Google Instant Previews: A Design or Usability Specialists New Best Friend?

It has been hard to attribute usability and design and their impact on search engine optimization. Anecdotal evidence has suggested that good design and usability improves the likelihood people will find valuable content within your website. Hopefully these visitors will link to your resources because they present well and offer value to their audience.

But good design is subjective. We’ve seen thousands of pretty ugly, confusing, and low-valued websites achieve very solid keyword rankings in the past.

Maybe Google Instant Previews will change that.

If you have not heard, Google Instant Previews is (in my opinion) a much needed addition to Google’s search interface. Clicking on the magnifying glass in the search result will instantly give the searcher a preview of that web page.

Here is Google’s preview video:

What does this mean to B2B marketers?
My prediction is that good design and usability will positively impact click rates, especially for longer-tail keyword search results, where a searchers’ intent is more defined.

What should the B2B marketer consider? Here are a some immediate suggestions:

  • Reassess how effectively you are using of images, screenshots, and visual aids on web pages.
  • Consider how clean and clear cut page layouts are for presenting information.
  • Dig into competitive research: how visually effective are the sites ranking well for your primary keyword targets?
  • Finally, keep in mind the searcher’s intent and consider what they would want to see based on a particular keyword query and the competitive results presented. Instant previews might make it easier to do so.

What do you think? Will Google Instant Previews impact the design and usability strategy of your website and web pages moving forward? We’d love to hear your thoughts and opinions in the comments below.

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