Google appears to be testing a new look for its search results pages that would change the color of links from the traditional blue to black.
First reports of the black SERP tests started to appear at the end of April, and Google already ran a similar test almost exactly one year ago. This time around, however, webmasters have noticed several different variations of the test, and we decided to try to find as many of them as we could.
We’ve found 11 variations thus far, and we are pretty confident there are more.
These results feature the listing URL above the page title.
This display is similar to the one above, but the URL text is noticeably smaller.
This display features a blue bar to the left of the search listing’s page title.
Similar to the display above, this version features a thicker blue bar to the left of the page title in search results.
To the right of the URL below, you can see three small dots, aligned horizontally. Presumably, you can click this for more options or information.
This display is similar to the one above, but the dots are aligned vertically.
In the screen shot below, you can see that the page title link is displayed in the traditional blue color, while all other links (sitelinks and URL) are black.
In this version, the URL is displayed in the traditional blue color, while the rest of the links (page title and sitelinks) appear black.
The display below features four colored dots to the right of the URL. The dots appear to be the same colors featured in Google’s logo.
This display shows the listing’s page title underlined with a blue dashed line. (h/t Aaron Dicks)
This test shows a blue globe icon in search results, above the page title and next to site breadcrumbs. (h/t Kenichi Suzuki)
Google itself claims to have run 9,800 live traffic experiments last year, and it seems they’re continuing that tradition this year in testing black URLs in search results. So far, we’ve identified at least 11 different variations of one test — and there may be more out there. Have you seen any versions we missed? If so, let us know on social media!
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