Google Instant Preview Design Tips

Web developers in London and many other places across the globe have had to re-adapt their strategies to accommodate Google's next big step. That step was the introduction of Google Instant Preview.

Now, for the average browser, superb feature allows them to see a quick snapshot of the site they are about to enter. This allows you to pick sites which look as if they may have the answer to your question.

From a design point of view, this small change actually makes a huge difference. First of all, clients are choosing to enter the site based on the first appearance. We have compiled eight tips from people working in a top London web design agency to assist you with future design:

1. Forget Flash

Let's put it like this, before the introduction of Google Instant Preview, flash was holding on to the edge of a cliff by its fingertips. Since its arrival, it has lost its grip and begun hurtling towards its doom. You see, Google Instant does not currently support flash, therefore potential clients simply get a nice big picture of a puzzle piece (the default image the system uses when it can’t provide a visual from the site), exactly where your costly flash additions should be. The simple answer is - limit the amount of Flash that you incorporate into your site.

2. Simplify matters

The image shown on Google Instant Preview is a shrunken image of the page displayed in the search results. This means that enlarged elements and a far simpler layout is going to make the desired impact.

3. Solve a goal

When searching, the potential client is looking for a solution. They should be able to clearly determine that your site is their answer just by looking at the instant image.

4. Structure will count

It is highly likely that the amount of text on your site, as well as the appearance and placement of it, will be vital. On the small image that is given as a preview, the reader will struggle to read any of the text. Therefore they will have to judge the subject of the copy by reading the small snippets pulled out by the instant Preview feature.

5. Copy is still key

Although this doesn't relate to design, it is important for Google Instant Preview. The feature pulls out pieces of text containing the searched term. Having clear, concise and enticing copy will assist in getting clicks through.

6. Home page is not the only concern

Remember, any page from your site that is indexed can show up on the results page. This means that attention must be given to the entire site.

7. Make use of whitespace

Whitespace has always been a key topic in the media. The same will apply with Google Instant Preview. A clean layout with designated sections is far more attractive than a busy, blurry image.

8. Think mobile

Using the same design elements that you would for a mobile site could be highly beneficial. The size of the image displayed on Google Instant Preview is around the same size as many touch screen phones, thus keeping this in mind may be helpful.

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