Google Search notice warns searchers when results are new and possibly unreliable

Google is testing a new search feature that tells the searchers when the results for their query are new and thus possibly unreliable. The notice reads “it looks like these results are changing quickly.” “If this topic is new, it can sometimes take time for results to be added by reliable sources.”

Vox first reported this, where Danny Sullivan of Google told the publication “when anybody does a search on Google, we’re trying to show you the most relevant, reliable information we can, but we get a lot of things that are entirely new.” In situations like this, Google needs time to build reliable search results.

What it looks like. Here is a screenshot from Vox:

Similar. April 2020, Google launched a feature to communicate to searchers when the search results didn’t provide any great results. The overall goal of both features are the same, to say that Google Search may not have the best answers for that specific query and Google is aware of it and so should you.

More. Danny Sullivan from Google told Vox “Someone had gotten this police report video released out in Wales, and it’s had a little bit bit of press coverage. But there’s still not a lot about it,” said Sullivan. “But people are probably searching for it, they may be going around on social media — so we can tell it’s starting to trend. And we can also tell that there’s not a lot of necessarily great stuff that’s out there. And we also think that maybe new stuff will come along.”

Why we care. Google showing this information shows that Google knows when its search results may not show the best search results. Thinking that Google can know these cases is pretty impressive. It just showcases how smart the search company can be, and when search fails, we often notice in a big way.

About The Author

Barry Schwartz a Contributing Editor to Search Engine Land and a member of the programming team for SMX events. He owns RustyBrick, a NY based web consulting firm. He also runs Search Engine Roundtable, a popular search blog on very advanced SEM topics. Barry’s personal blog is named Cartoon Barry and he can be followed on Twitter here.

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