UK sites could find their search engine optimisation efforts are dealt a blow amid claims that Google is trialling a change to its country-specific search.
The Google UK homepage traditionally displays a radio button to select search results specific to domains in the region.
However, users of Google’s Chrome browser have begun to see this change, with no option to make such a selection on the homepage, reports SEO Home.
Instead, a text link is provided on the first page of search results.
But this is currently inconsistent, sometimes appearing at the top of search results and sometimes at the bottom.
SEO Home adds that while this could perceivably have benefits for UK search engine optimisation, the link is sometimes not displayed at all – leaving websites from elsewhere in the world ranked above local sites.
The article concludes that "this is not good" for UK-based webmasters or search users.
SEO Home previously noted that the Chrome browser was being marketed heavily to users of Google UK, with a large icon in the top-right of the search engine’s homepage rather than the discrete text link Google might have been expected to use.
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