Online consumers searching the web for news updates can now find clickable headlines in standard Google results. Although Google hasn’t made an announcement about this feature, several searchers are reporting that they see linked headlines in their general web results – and brands that provide custom news content should take note.

A Google search for the phrase “news” now returns results from some of the world’s biggest news providers, with each result featuring several linked headlines and time stamps. News headlines in Google's general web results.

Searching for specific news providers can also return results with linked headlines. For instance, a search for CNN or The New York Times now produces clickable news items as well. The time stamps accompanying articles indicate that the content featured is fairly fresh – all of the results seen thus far are less than 12 hours old, and some have been published for just fifteen minutes. The New York Times now features clickable news headlines.

While Google has remained mum about the feature, this move demonstrates the value of fresh content for marketers. At press time, it seems only major news providers have links to recent headlines, but if this search feature evolves, it could become a way for marketers who provide industry updates to get more clickable content displayed for searches related to their sectors.

Plus, as Brafton has reported, experts at the recent ad:tech San Francisco conference agreed that news content engages online audiences.