Google has begun testing simpler and cleaner models for the search engine results page. The designs vary, but they all have more white space between results, fewer secondary links, like cached and similar, and no underlining in common. Another version of the search engine model has dashed lines between results, as well. These models have been filtered around the net, presumably to test which are easier for users to navigate.
Some critics of the filtered designs have complained that the designs are too similar to other search engines, such as Bing, and the new designs are too different from the comfort of the original model. Some users have started using Twitter as a vehicle for opinions about the separate test pages. The test is apart of a plan called the bucket test, where changes are shown to only a small amount of viewers can see the changes.
The models have less information per link and fewer results on the page. This allows a cleaner, streamlined look, but many users are not pleased with the possibility of these changes. Some users say the results pages with less information is counterintuitive to Google’s reputation for the amount of information from results. Fewer results per page will force users to scroll more often and click through to more pages than before.
There is an agreement between users on two possible reasons Google is choosing to test this type of layout, including:
Provoke a Feeling of Accuracy
By limiting the number of result on a page and clearing the rest of the space of most secondary links, user will have the illusion of a more accurate and considered search.
For example, if you were to search for medical assistant schools, Google would only list a few of the most relevant keyword specific sites found online, without linking to a myriad of other different secondary sites.
For More Advertisement
There is a section of the critical pool that believes Google is opening more white space for new forms of advertisement. This might also allow them to insert multimedia formats of advertisement, instead of the usually text or photo-based ads.
However, Google has made no other statement, except that the model were a part of a test, but not necessarily the final set-up. User found, if they deleted cookies from their computer, the screen display would return to the original format. Google will be collecting data from user in the test group to get a sense of the parts of the designs that worked or didn’t work.