With Chrome, you can open an “incognito” window that will allow you to check all your positions like a person with no identity on the Web. Google won’t associate your social pals or preferences when using these incognito windows, and if you search for a keyword in an incognito window, you get stripped down results –real results.
It seems that Google is testing something else that will enable you to turn personalized results off on the SERPs pages (search engine results pages or where you land when you type a query into the search box) without opening an incognito window. If you look in the upper right-hand corner of the SERPs page, you’ll sometimes see two buttons — one has an image of a person on it and another an image of the globe. It looks like this:
I just tried about twenty searches and couldn’t get this button to appear so that I could do a screen cap for you, which is why I figure that Google is testing. Sometimes it shows up and sometimes not. Eventually, I got it to appear in a new browser window.
When you mouse over the “person” button, it says, “Currently showing personal results,” and when you mouse over the globe, it says, “Hide personal results.”
However, clicking either side may not change your results. It all depends on who in your online social circles is talking about your search term. If they are, the comments on Google Plus or the videos in YouTube may show up in your personalized results. If not, you probably won’t see anything different on the page, no matter which side of the button you click.
This is important to me, since I’d like a better picture of where a site stands for they keyword I typed in, without the whole “personalized results” factor being an issue. Let’s face it, your kids or your friends are probably seeing different pages than you do, so it won’t change for them or for people living in places other than your locale. But at least you can get a better idea of where your site stands without the personal stuff factored in.
Big whoop. You can’t change what other people see and you can’t get everyone online into your circles. It’s just something I noticed Google doing and it may come in handy. Who knows? Thought you should know.