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SEO Web Design, LLC / SEO  / Google Tests Desktop Results Without Favicons; The Old Design

Google Tests Desktop Results Without Favicons; The Old Design

Some folks are seeing Google test the old Google desktop search interface. Remember the one before Google launched those (what I feel are horrible) favicons and black ad labels[1] for the snippets? Yea, Google is testing showing the old interface to some searchers.

I saw at least two tweets mentioning this to me, here they are:

Saw that last night too.

— Dawn Anderson (@dawnieando) January 24, 2020[2]

Fav icons in Google Search stopped showing … Is this a. Bug ?? @JohnMu @rustybrick[3][4][5]

— Raman⚡ (@RrRatan) January 24, 2020[6]

So this is not a bug, I don’t think. Just like when Google pushed out on mobile last year, some saw the green ad label and old interface stick around. Danny Sullivan from Google told us back then[7] “I checked. It’s not a test. With these types of changes, we sometimes don’t roll out to a tiny percentage for some last metrics gathering. That’s what’s happening here; I expect it’ll be complete in the coming weeks.”

So I assume this is similar to that launch and this is not a bug, but still out there for testing data. Just to make sure that CTR rate on those ads are super high. 🙂

Forum discussion at Twit[8]ter[9].

Update: I was wrong, kind of, Google is going to take feedback and make changes, and test them:

Last week we updated the look of Search on desktop to mirror what’s been on mobile for months. We’ve heard your feedback about the update. We always want to make Search better, so we’re going to experiment with new placements for favicons….

— Google SearchLiaison (@searchliaison) January 24, 2020[10]

Here’s our full statement on why we’re going to experiment further. Our early tests of the design for desktop were positive. But we appreciate the feedback, the trust people place in Google, and we’re dedicating to improving the experience.[11]

— Google SearchLiaison (@searchliaison) January 24, 2020[12]


  1. ^ favicons and black ad labels (
  2. ^ January 24, 2020 (
  3. ^ @JohnMu (
  4. ^ @rustybrick (
  5. ^ (
  6. ^ January 24, 2020 (
  7. ^ Google told us back then (
  8. ^ Twit (
  9. ^ ter (
  10. ^ January 24, 2020 (
  11. ^ (
  12. ^ January 24, 2020 (

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Search Engine Roundtable is a well-rounded view on search engines and search engine marketing from five segments of the Web population represented by senior members of the major SEO/SEM forums on the Internet.

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