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Link previews for your site

Posted by Michael Bloch in web development (Sunday January 21, 2007 )

Would you like to give your site visitors previews of any pages you link to without them having to leave the current page? A few simple lines of code can give you this handy feature.

Snap.com is an interesting search engine relying heavily on providing visual information to searchers. When you run a search at Snap, as you type, suggestions are offered to complete the query. Once the query is entered, mousing over a listing brings up a preview of the page on the right hand side. It’s incredibly quick in displaying page screenshots.

As an added free service, Snap.com offers site owners the ability of showing their visitors a preview of any page linked to on their site – be it an internal or external link.

The service is called Snap Preview Anywhere <- move your mouse over that link for an example. Implementation is very quick and easy; just a few snippets of code. While Snap recommends placing the code in between your head tags, it can also be embedded in the body of your pages. I'm assuming it could be called through a .js file. You can also choose whether you wish for the Snap.com search box to appear under any preview. If your visitor clicks the link to the page on the preview snapshot, that page will open in a new window; so you won't lose the person off your site. A handy service, but if you are going to use it, implement it strategically rather than right across your site perhaps. A few larger blogs are now including this feature as they've had good feedback from their users. WordPress.com is offering it as an integrated service to all the bloggers in their network; so it may be worthwhile trialing on your own blog or site.



 

 
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