Google Rolls Out Continuous Scrolling For Search On Desktops

Google is rolling out the continuous scrolling feature for desktops, the company confirms via Twitter. The feature helps users find more search results quickly without needing to click on a particular search page or the "next" button at the bottom of a search page. Starting today, desktop users in the United States can experience continuous scrolling while searching in English. Google might still show the Related Searches or advertisements section between results from different pages, but searchers may not need to click "Next" as often.

To recall, Google released continuous scrolling for Search on mobile in October 2021 as a more "seamless and intuitive" way of presenting the search results. When users reach the bottom of a search result page, continuous scrolling loads the next set of results that would otherwise appear on the second page. The idea is to help users find what they are looking for if the first few search results do not help. It also improves the visibility of certain search results that would otherwise be on the pages that users do not reach.

Continuous scrolling reduces the time to tap on the subsequent page and load it manually. Hence, when users start scrolling on the desktop, they can view six results pages without having to load all the pages individually. On mobile, the limit is set at four pages. If one wants to go past that limit, tapping on the "See more" button loads more results.

Don't confuse continuous scrolling with infinite scrolling

Users should not confuse continuous scrolling with infinite scrolling. With continuous scrolling, users can scroll past multiple search result pages at once, but they have to hit a button to load more pages after the limit described above. However, with infinite scrolling, users can keep discovering new content as long as there is anything to show (via seoclarity). While Google does not have infinite scrolling, several social media platforms like Facebook and Instagram have infinite scrolling on mobile. Additionally, some websites also use continuous scrolling to grab users for extended periods, showing them new content until they keep scrolling.

Google implements continuous scrolling at a time when users are complaining about the poor quality of search results. In July, Google's internal research suggested that young users avoid Google for platforms like Instagram and TikTok. Following the analysis, Google tweaked the search results page a bit to make it more visual in September by highlighting imagery, videos, map snippets, and other information in new ways. Google is also testing Discover-style widget cards for desktop users to elevate the experience.

Although continuous scrolling doesn't have to do anything with the quality of search results — as that depends upon Google's ranking system — it makes discovering more search results convenient. In due course, the feature should also be available to users outside the United States.