We again highlight a few changes in the SERPS. Google is constantly changing them and it’s hard to keep track, so we try to sometimes highlight one or two of them. Today another interesting find again by UK SEO Andrew Girdwood. He noticed that Google is taking another small step with the integration of social into the search results: your own Google Reader subscriptions. This is not a new feature, Google has been doing this for a while, but not many actually see it.
We all now are familiar with the “shared by” messages which indicate that somebody inside your social circle has shared a specific page on one of their social networks. In most cases this is Twitter. We are also all familiar with the “starred results”, the results you either star in the SERPS or save as a Google Bookmarks. These usually show up at the top of the results.
Now Andrew noticed something which is related to the Bookmarks: results which are also in your subscriptions. I am not seeing it myself right now, but what Andrew is seeing is a line “From your Google Reader subscriptions”. This indicates that the result can also be found in your RSS feeds, at least if you are using Google Reader.
It is not clear whether or not this actually has an influence on the rankings, probably not, but it might have an impact on the CTR.
There are two things to this change which I’d like to highlight: the next step and the “why?”
First the next step: a logical step would also be that it won’t just be your own results you are seeing, but also shared results from others within their Google Reader. I’ve tried testing that but didn’t see that happen yet. Possibly because I am in the Netherlands, but maybe it just isn’t there yet.
Finally the “why”. It makes sense that Google indicates that you might have already seen something in your Reader. But there is one ‘strange’ feeling to it: how many are actually using Google Reader? In our industry we might be, but outside our industry it’s a lot less common tool to use. Why bother? Maybe Google has a bigger plan for that.