While writing my article earlier this week on Panda and Penguin, I noticed that Google is showing an answer box for Panda. But the interesting thing is it is showing two sources.
You can see it has its usual answer box text and source. But instead of choosing an image from the source they are quoting from for their answer box, if there is one available, Google has instead chosen to match the content with an image that is the first image result for that same search term.
In this case, it is an image from Cognitive SEO. The link goes to an expanded look at the image within Google Image Search, not to the image actually hosted on the source site. So it is kind of a toss up on whether it would translate to extra traffic or not, and it could definitely depend on the query.
It does have the definite benefit however of having the company URL displayed in the answer box with the image, something that is missing from answer boxes that pull the image from the same page as they quote and link to.
However, throw mobile into the mix and the image URL is definitely significantly more prominent to the searcher.
Here are two examples of answer boxes that use the same source for both the content and the image, one example from Wikipedia and the other from another site. Neither image shows the URL as it does in the Panda answer box.
So if you aren’t able to nab the answer box content listing, if you get the number one ranking image for that same search term, you might just be able to show up as the image in the answer box and can get some of those answer box clicks for yourself.
I am not sure if this is a test or standard, but others were not able to replicate it, and it was only showing in half my browser sessions for me, in the others it was replaced by Google News results.
Added: It seems that it didn’t give any traffic, but I still think it is sweet for brand recognition and getting your brand out there in front of people searching for Google Panda.
@jenstar really cool find. 🙂 Jennifer. no more traffic from G . 2 click aways the image is 🙂
— cognitiveSEO (@cognitiveSEO) May 8, 2015
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