Google desktop search results in December. SEO professionals anticipated the impact of the change immediately.
This article will provide insights into continuous scroll’s relevancy today and its possible impact on the search experience. It also explains how SEOs can adapt to it.
Continuous scroll, as I view it, is a departure from the old “page” metaphor.
We have been using the term webpages since the 1990s as though websites were written on paper. Even with over twenty years of technological advancement, this flawed metaphor persists even in Google’s SERPs. It might soon disappear.
Scrolling is a common feature of the internet today. Scrolling is the easiest method to navigate web pages. Most websites are “below” the fold.
This is why scroll users have been able to enjoy a more consistent experience in recent years. By doing this, web content can be loaded as users scroll down, thus the ” ” name.
It’s technically not infinite, since scrolls only last as long there are content. Instead, “continuous scroll” is the right term.
This approach is used by most social media platforms to offer users an endless stream of content, which can be . People are increasingly using Freedom to block infinite scroll websites and eliminate distractions while working.
Some publishers have even begun to combine pagination with scrolling methods – where the user is served with a new article after they reach the end if the current post.
SEO heavily depends on page metaphors to attach keywords to specific pieces of content.
DuckDuckGo and other smaller search engines have served search results with no pagination since quite a while.
The user must click on “More Results” to see additional organic search results.
It is much easier to scroll than click. This is simple psychology.
It’s easier than ever to continue in the same direction that you are already moving towards.
“The Best Place to Hide a Dead Body …'”
Most searchers click only on Google’s Page 1 results.
SEO professionals have a joke about the small chance of being found on Page 2.
Google search results Page 2 is the best page to conceal a body dead.
Oh! Think about all the bodies that have been hidden from page 2 throughout the years. They will soon all be discovered.
SEO experts joke that Google may not be able to recognize the importance of the phrase “page”. Based on data and past experience, let’s evaluate it.
We have witnessed studies that analyze click distribution in search results, and user experience testing on the effect of scrolling on page visibility and usability.
Between 20 and 40%, the number one organic search result receives most attention. However, the second and third organic results get double-digit percentages. It’s over half the clicks.
What about the rest? The rest of the page?
The majority of click distribution studies showed that clicks only 2% to 9% are generated by the remainder of the results.
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Beyond the fold: Is truth or fiction?
Traditional newspapers are the origins of the concept “above-the-fold”. Newspapers were large enough that they could be folded in half and carried on their own.
Passersby were able to see the headlines by casually scanning them and placed the most significant news stories on the top page.
Many website owners began to apply the same rules to their online content after the metaphors of the page and the front page were moved to the internet.
Is “above-the-fold” applicable only to newspapers? There are many opinions.
Experts believe that it is vital to place the most crucial elements at the top of the page so they are visible from all sides. This concept is similar to traditional newspaper’s “above-the fold” idea.
Some people believe that the fold on the internet is myth as in order to see the remainder of the webpage.
Experts, regardless of whether they are in agreement with this concept, agree that landing pages and homepages should be as large as possible.
Because on average, 80% website visitors only view one page and then go back to their original site without ever clicking any buttons.
A combined solution is the most effective. It displays the important elements above the fold, such as contact, CTA and value proposition. The rest of the scroll can be seen without having to rely on clicking to go to other pages.
Designers can even add fancy effects to enhance your experience scrolling through pages or other content.
This is apparently the same approach Google uses for search results.
Google required more room to push organic search results down the SERP, given the over the years.
Continuous scrolling can have many possible impacts on the Google search experience and therefore SEO practices.
These are my ideas and those of other SEO professionals who have been discussing the topic.
There are no more “Page 1” results
Let’s begin with the obvious. It will not be possible to have a “page 1” in the real world.
SXO strategist Lucas ROgala funny
- “Now everyone can rank [on] the first page.”
Andrew Prince is a senior SEO analyst for Wayfair.
- This may be the end of the “we want to rank at Page 1” requests. 6 pages will show up while you scroll down.
You will see more results
Because of the convenience, it’s more probable that users will scroll down further than usual to see the top 10 organic results.
- Humans are natural scrollers. This is great news, and will likely translate into higher click-through rates on lower ranking domains.
Attention may be diverted from the top three
The top three results currently account for the majority of clicks. While this won’t change much in the immediate future, their dominant position might decrease.
This has been possible over the years due to:
- Other features
- Various page elements.
- You can find more content types.
The inverted pyramid of click distribution has been diluted by this expansion. Click heat maps showed a bias towards the top spot in Google searches, when they still had the “10 blue” links. More than 40% clicked on click heatmaps.
As , click through rate studies show, today’s top organic spot is worth around 28%.
People might become more comfortable scrolling down and less on top results due to the many options below.
You will find more ads and other features at the top
Google has more space for ads and other special features than any other search engine, so it is easier to drive organic search results down.
You can expect to see more of the special features at the top, as they cannot be displayed properly under continuous scroll results.
Even though they have infinite scroll capabilities, websites with footers can be a nightmare to use. To reach the footer link, users must chase down the invisible footer and click it.
We may not see the same amount of ads or features as organic results. They can be placed anywhere Google will. The “middle”, before the section that was previously displayed separately as a page.
Tobiasz Szlek will see a lower CTR due to this.
- “… We should expect to see more zero click searches because Google will present more information on its result pages …”
One website may have fewer or more results clusters
You could have two pages with the same result, or two different results.
You might see more results than one site if you increase the number of results from 10 to 100. However, they may be displayed together.
Google’s response to this issue will be fascinating. These combined result clusters might become more common in the beginning, but they will be less frequent once Google adapts their relevance to continuous scrolling.
SEO experts can still improve or adapt.
How can we as content creators, publishers and SEO professionals adapt? The actual effect of the changes will determine how it affects you.
These changes can be made to improve your SEO strategy and long-term content marketing plans, based on past trends.
Concentrate on the lowest-hanging fruit that can rank amongst the top three
Ranking in the Top 3 is still recommended, not the “Top 10” or the “Page 1”. The former are completely meaningless without pages.
It’s better to optimize pages that rank low for keyphrases and find those fruits before they reach the top.
Page titles will help you stand out from the rest in search engine results pages
It’s becoming more difficult to be noticed in the sea of SERPs, given the number of organic results that people are going to peruse.
Here are some techniques you might consider:
- Snippets featured
- Other characters
You should optimize page titles and meta description so search engines don’t just pick the one with the most numbers in front of it or the one with the most recent date.
Use Google’s features such as images and “People Also Ask”
Join them if you don’t have the ability to beat them. Google owns the “SERP real property” and it’s difficult to be competitive against them.
Google will require you to follow their rules. If they tell you to stay below the fold, you are obliged to do so.
You can still get special treatment from Google by optimizing content for their features.
A more targeted search query is a successful strategy. This can often be displayed as .
You have to question whether the searchers make these grammar errors or if they are displaying potential answers in the most context-sensitive and convenient way.
No matter the reason, there are many questions you can answer by simply looking at the search results for keywords that you’re optimizing for.
Image and video content are another way to fast track your journey and be more clickable than your competitors. You can repurpose your content in images and videos by using different formats.
You can increase your chance of being clicked by creating dedicated images, such as photos, visualizations, infographics or videos (interviews tutorials reviews),
These opinions are not necessarily those of Search Engine Land, but they do reflect the views of the guest author. Here are the names of staff authors.
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