SEO and Continuous Scrolling
Many websites have already utilized the continuous scrolling feature, however, Google recently made the same change to its mobile search results. These days, instead of the search engine showing several pages of results at the bottom of a page, in the mobile website, there aren’t any pages any longer. Instead of breaking the results down into several pages, the search engine now shows the first four pages worth of search results through a continuous scrolling feature.
While many companies used to utilize pagination to break up different pieces of information on websites, it’s not an ideal choice for user experience on mobile pages. While there still isn’t enough information on whether this type of search result is going to impact SEO efforts from brands and corporations, it’s definitely going to change how users interact with the SERPs.
First Page Click-Through Rate (CTR)
Since with the continuous scrolling feature, the first four pages of results are more accessible to users, the click-through rate (CTR) for the results that users get on the first page is likely going to drop. Many social media platforms have already utilized the continuous scrolling feature, which means the same feature on SERPs is going to make users feel like they’re scrolling down their newsfeed. This will result in more people exploring their options in search results.
Although the results at the top of the first page are ranked that way for a reason – they’re generally the best places where people can find the answers they’re looking for – consumers are already used to that point. However, over a period of time, as more users grow accustomed to continuous scrolling on search results, it’s likely going to result in a decrease in CTR on the first page of results.
Second Page Impressions
This new continuous scrolling feature makes it easier for users to access the results on the second page and onward, which means the websites on those pages are going to see an increase in their impressions rate.
However, as previously mentioned, giving people the ability to scroll continuously and explore their options also means they’re not just going to stop looking at their options when they get to the second page. According to current research, less than 1% of all users actually click on websites that they find on the second page of SERPs. However, those websites will now have to compete with the results from the first page.
When most people think about their news feed on social media platforms, they first tend to think about all of the different videos and images they see on those feeds. Google’s equivalent to this is its rich search results pages, which also contain other types of features such as featured snippets, videos, commonly asked questions, and more.
With more people scrolling down the search engine results pages, it’s going to be easier for the company to include those types of rich results. On the other hand, static pages tend to avoid having too many rich elements because they make users feel overwhelmed and crowded.