Google Tests New Labels and Warnings
Google is constantly experimenting and trying new things, as they are always quick to remind everyone who asks (usually when inquiring about rumored or apparent updates and changes). Recently some eagle-eyed industry observers have noticed several new features cropping up that will likely be of interest to marketers as well as internet users in general.
Slow label. A few blogs have reported spotting red “slow” labels next to results for sites that are deemed slow to load. Since page loading speed is a ranking factor, it is in a business’ best interest to do everything possible to ensure their sites load quickly. That’s especially true in light of these labels, which would likely deter visitors who don’t want to deal with a sluggish site.
Color variations for review stars. Different color variations for the review stars began cropping up a few months ago, but it seems like Google has recently stepped up that activity. While they have toyed with a number of different colors in the past, green seems to be the prevalent shade in recent weeks. As of now, there’s not really any action that marketers can or should take, but it’s something that would be interesting to monitor.
Warnings for sites with potentially harmful downloads. Google has typically offered an alert before you were about to download questionable software. Now, it has increased protective measures in Chrome, Search and ads. With Chrome, visitors will see a bright red warning box before proceeding to a site with potentially harmful downloads. Search results will have warning indicators, and ads that link to potentially harmful sites will be disabled. This is yet another reason for businesses to be diligent about security, and take all possible measures to monitor and maintain the integrity of all content on their site, especially anything involving downloads.
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