When Google makes changes and adds new features, the implications for website owners can be significant.

A new feature that Google announced at its Searchology event yesterday falls into that category.

When performing a search on Google, you’ll notice a new “Show options…” link that, when clicked, offers a number of new options for better refining a search.

These new Search Options give searchers the ability to easily limit search results to specific types of content sources (including Videos, Forums and Reviews) and to limit search results by how recent they are (eg. results 24 hours fresh).

There’s also the ability to toggle on the display of images from the pages listed in the results and to display more text from the pages.

The implications of the new Search Options are easy enough to understand: websites that put themselves in a position to take advantage of them could potentially reap more organic traffic from Google.

Here are some suggestions:

  • If your website can make use of video, forums, reviews, etc., now’s as good a time as any to consider adding them. By building up this content, you’ll be in a better position to leverage the increased number of searches for this content that Google’s new option offering is likely to spur.
  • Provide frequent content updates. While I’ve always found regular content updates to be a boon to Google love, there’s no doubt about it now: by keeping your content fresh, you’ll improve your chances of being found when a searcher limits a search to recent results.
  • Pay greater attention to content and imagery. Since searchers can now view more text and choose to display images from pages, website owners now have a greater ability to influence a click by making sure that page copy and imagery is appealing.