Bing revealed it recently implemented a UX change to correct an ongoing problem with its search box.
The change likely went unnoticed by everyone, because it’s literally invisible. However, as Bing says: “no change to the UX it too trivial.”
In this particular case, the change to Bing’s UX fixed a problem where users’ clicks on the search box weren’t registering.
“…sometimes even though users were clicking on our search box multiple times, their clicks were being missed. We were then able to quantify that 4% of all the users that clicked on the search box had one or more missed clicks.”
How Bing Fixed its Problem
Bing fixed this problem by widening the margins of its search box to reduce non-clickable space where the html form control resides. Since the form and search box have the same background color, users didn’t know they were clicking on the margin of the search box.
The changes to Bing’s UX are depicted in the graphic below. Bing says, since implementing the changes, missed clicks on the search box all but vanished. Moreover, user satisfaction has improved.
Other Sites Have the Same Problem
Without naming names, Bing says other websites have unclickable areas on their search boxes as well. Those sites, which include search engines and social media, may be experiencing missed clicks.
Bing suggests that websites affected by this issue can positively impact their users by applying the same fix. Site owners can determine if they have a similar problem by using Microsoft’s new Clarity tool, which tracks user interactions on a website.
Site owners can apply for a free pilot test of Clarity by visiting clarity.microsoft.com.
Matt Southern has been the lead news writer at Search Engine Journal since 2013. With a degree in communications, Matt has an uncanny ability to make the most complex subject matter easy to understand. When he’s not ferociously following and covering the search industry, he’s busy writing SEO-friendly copy that converts.