The escape hatch is the “search instead” link offered in the “showing results for…” module to allow users in Google to show search results for their misspelled query instead of Google’s alternative query.
Spelling Correction at Google
In query processing, Google search use a spelling algorithm to identify queries that contain typos or misspellings. Once discovered, Google offers spelling correction when serving search results.
This generally allow Google to offer more relevant search results to the users that may have misspelled their query.
This spelling correction is likely being done by Google’s Spelling Suggestion Engine.
Did You Mean?
Historically, Google served a module saying “Did you mean:” and then offered an alternative query with fixed spelling.
The challenge with this was that, if the user didn’t click on the alternative query, Google was showing results for both the misspelled query and the alternative query in the search results.
This caused multiple issues with the quality of search results.
Showing results for… Search instead…
To fix some of those challenges, they came with the “showing results for… search instead…” module to perform full page replacement.
Google’s “showing results for…” module performs full page replacement whenever Google detects a typo or misspelling in the query.
Google’s “showing results for…” module performs full page replacement using search results from the alternative query whenever Google detects a typo or misspelling in the query.
They still, however, provide you with a link to your original query with the “search instead…” module. This link is the escape hatch.
SEO Strategist at Tripadvisor, ex- Seek (Melbourne, Australia). Specialized in technical SEO. Writer in Python, Information Retrieval, SEO and machine learning. Guest author at SearchEngineJournal, SearchEngineLand and OnCrawl.