Google is playing around with the formatting of its search results page.
There have been reports of users seeing black links on Google search, rather than the familiar blue.
According to TheSEMPost, Google has been testing black search result links internationally since Friday or Saturday.
Affected users were quick to express their feelings about the new colour scheme on social networks. Many, such as the Twitter user below, did not welcome the unexpected change and requested Google bring back blue links.
— Joseph Madden (@Hyper200) May 9, 2016
It’s not clear if this is yet another A/B test being carried out by Google- comparing two versions of a web page to see which one performs better – to examine the differences in user behaviour.
Google once ran an experiment with 41 different shades of blue as part of an effort to find which shade provoked the most clicks. The change brought in the company an extra $200 million a year in ad revenue.
In 2014, Google UK’s managing director, Dan Cobley, said: “We saw which shades of blue people liked the most, demonstrated by how much they clicked on them. As a result we learned that a slightly purpler shade of blue was more conducive to clicking than a slightly greener shade of blue, and gee whizz, we made a decision.
“But the implications of that for us, given the scale of our business, was that we made an extra $200m a year in ad revenue.”