Black Google text has begun replacing the typical blue links in the SERPs. Google has been experimenting with changing the color of the links as of late, but it’s usually from a darker blue to a lighter blue. But black Google text? That’s pretty new to us.
As purveyors of world-class SEO services, we tried to get to the bottom of it.
Here’s a screenshot we found on Saturday the 7th:
Google has been changing a lot of things up in the SERPs lately, like the number of ads that show up above the first position. They’re always trying to make their product more user-friendly, but how has this one been received so far?
We at SEO Inc. personally don’t like the black text at all. Considering how often readers scan rather than read each word on a page, we find that black Google link text is too difficult to discern from the meta description below, which is also black. Yes, the link is a bigger font compared to the description, but every little detail matters. And this is one we aren’t thrilled with. Hopefully, we won’t have to put up with this for long.
Are you upset by the change? You aren’t the only one.
Other users have come across the same thing. On the 6th, several users opened topics in the Google Search Help Forum, looking for reasons why they were getting black Google text instead of blue. One user thought it was an issue with extensions or themes, and tried clearing their search and browsing history. A more displeased user said they would switch to Firefox and Bing if they couldn’t figure out a way to change the color back.
The top contributor for both topics recommended using the “Send feedback” button at the bottom of the SERPs page if the user had an issue.
Don’t be alarmed about the dreaded black Google text
Easy, there. Before you start doing research on the effects of black text vs. blue text on search, you should know this change may not last.
Remember—Google loves experiments. They are running them all the time. Tests as small as a text color change or as big as full-blown algorithmic changes can occur, so don’t fret. It’s possible you’ll hear a little buzz about this and then never hear of it again.
So far there doesn’t seem to be a pattern as to who is affected; this is just another of Google’s random experiments. We’re lucky one of our accounts were flagged so we could bring you this news.
We get an important takeaway from this experiment: people are resistant to change. Even something as simple as the font color on the first page of Google’s search results can make people upset if changed (including us). We see no reason why Google wouldn’t run their experiments carefully—after all, they take on the majority of the world’s internet searches. We doubt we’d see a truly dramatic migration away from Chrome and Google if the black text somehow did stick, but Google probably won’t risk it.
The thing is the change has little to do with search engine optimization as far as the search engines are concerned. This is strictly a user experience issue, and it’s one people seem to be unanimously hating.
Whether you find blue text more comfortable to read or simply don’t like it when familiar things in your life change in small ways, changes like these are always a surprise. Just remember that if you come across black text in the Google SERPs to keep calm, hit that “Send feedback” button, and know that it probably won’t last.
You can always call SEO Inc. for any questions with Google’s updates. We’d love to tell you all we know!