Google is rolling out a new look for its search page with a tweaked search menu. The new search menu now includes icons in addition to regular search category names like News, Images, Shopping, Flights, Videos, and more. The change was reportedly first seen in March this year when Google was found testing the new look with a limited set of users. The search category icons were first introduced back in 2010 but the search giant removed them the next year.
The tweaked Google search page, which seems to have started rolling out broadly earlier today, is now seemingly live for everyone. We have tested the change on multiple machines and across browsers and it is available for everyone. Search Engine Land was also able to confirm from Google that the new design is indeed live for searchers today. Further, Twitter is full of user reports from across the world about the tweaked Google search page. We have seen reports from UK, Austria, Germany, Latvia, Indonesia, Australia, US, and more.
Google constantly tests new designs and tweaks for its search pages, but the broader changes are only made every couple of years. As we mentioned earlier, the last time Google included icons with the search category names was back in 2010. Search Engine Land notes that the icons disappeared in 2011. According to the website, Google has been testing the latest design since March this year.
The latest change doesn't really impact the functioning of the Google Search page and is primary a visual change. It is unclear why Google has added these icons now as they don't seem to add any value and just clutter the otherwise cleaner design.
In another major design change, Google last month tweaked how search results appear on mobile devices by putting the search result URL above the page title.