Image searches are a popular feature of Google’s search engine, letting users specifically find images related to the topic they’re searching for, rather than site results. Google is now improving the experience by adding a new feature called ‘Swipe to Visit’, which will allow users to quickly visit the webpage where the image was sourced from for the search. The feature relies on Google’s Accelerated Mobile Pages (AMP) program, which online publishers can use to allow their pages to quickly load on mobile browsers.
The announcement has been detailed in a blog post by Google, and comes soon after the feature was first previewed at Google I/O this year. The feature is now rolling out for mobile Web searches, and is meant to make the browsing experience smoother for users by allowing them to quickly visit webpages linked to specific image searches.
After the user selects a specific image from a search when using a mobile device, they will get a preview at the bottom of the screen for the website where the image was sourced. Swiping up on this preview will instantly load the page. In order for this functionality to work, the page must be optimised for AMP, which then uses its prerender capability to quickly load. Naturally, the functionality will only work with pages from publishers that support AMP.
When a user swipes to visit the page, it will count as a page visit for the publisher. The ease of visiting the page is likely to make browsing multiple images and pages easier for users, and will also benefit publishers that are able to take advantage of the functionality. If a page isn’t AMP-optimised, the page can still be loaded normally by clicking on the link below the image from the search. The feature will start rolling out today, and should be available to everyone for mobile Web searches in the coming weeks.