Have you heard about "Mobilegeddon"? It's the latest major Google algorithm update and it goes into effect on April 21st. Yep, that's just days away, folks...
What does this mean to you?
In a nutshell, with this new algorithm, Google will penalize your search result ranking if your website isn't optimized for mobile devices. So, if your website isn't responsive or doesn't have a separate mobile version, you're in a bit of trouble. Google won't consider your site relevant to users if your text is too small to read, you don't have a mobile viewport, your content is wider than the screen, or you have links that are too close together, etc. Google will basically put you in the dog house until you learn to play nice.
Here are 3 good reasons from a news brief by Emma Fitzpatrick on how the new update will affect your business and marketing:
- You may be losing money - There are more than 1.5 billion people surfing the Web on a mobile device. Of those, 63 percent expect they'll be doing more mobile shopping over the next couple of years.
- Mobile is important to your customers - Mobile users may have the shortest attention span of any Web user. They're on the go, so they want their information fast. If your website takes longer than three seconds to load, 57 percent of your mobile users will leave your website and go to a competitor.
- You get better conversions - Shoppers and browsers on mobile make quick, snappy decisions. 88 percent of people admit that shopping on a mobile device makes them make more spontaneous purchases — that is, if your website is to their liking.
Why the algorithm change?
Basically, Google wants to help users discover more mobile-friendly content, so starting April 21 they'll be expanding their use of mobile-friendliness as a ranking signal, resulting in more mobile-friendly websites in search results. Google believes "When it comes to search on mobile devices, users should get the most relevant and timely results, no matter if the information lives on mobile-friendly web pages or apps. As more people use mobile devices to access the internet, our algorithms have to adapt to these usage patterns."
In addition to the mobile device update, Google "Will begin to use information from indexed apps as a factor in ranking for signed-in users who have the app installed. As a result, we may now surface content from indexed apps more prominently in search." To find out how to implement App Indexing, check out Google's step-by-step guide on the developer site.
Looking for more details on Google's announcement? Here's a link to the actual update from Google.
Now that you know all about the change, what should you do?
For most businesses this algorithm change isn't exactly coming out of the blue. If this announcement is catching you by surprise, most likely, this is the nudge you needed to finally update your company website. Before you panic, we highly recommend testing your current website using Google's Mobile-Friendly Test page. It's easy, all you have to do is enter your website address and Google will tell if you passed the Mobile-Friendliness test or not. It will even tell you exactly what's wrong and offer suggestions on how to fix it. Please note that this tool is for testing individual pages, so you'll need to enter your website pages one-by-one. Once you have an idea of what's wrong, develop a plan to implement change at a pace that is right for your organization.
If you’re a webmaster, you can see how Googlebot views your pages and get a full list of mobile usability issues across your site with Google's Mobile Usability Report.
If you're late to the game and have fallen behind the mobile-friendly times, read these 2 articles to calm your panic and gain some perspective:
Putting “Mobilegeddon” In Perspective - Worried about Google's impending mobile-friendliness algorithm update? Columnist Adam Dorfman has some advice for you: relax.
Google: The Mobile-Friendly Ranking Factor Runs In Real-Time & Is On A Page-By-Page Basis - Google tells us that the mobile-friendly algorithm launching in about a month is on a page-by-page basis and runs in real-time, which eases the concerns of many webmasters.
The good news it that this new algorithm is run on a page-by-page basis and also runs in real time, which means that once you improve your website and the next time Google crawls your site pages, you'll start to experience the benefits. So you won't be in the dog house forever!
Have a Pawsitively Tail Waggin’ Good Day!
P.S. Ruff Haus Design is a results focused brand consulting company located in San Diego, CA. Let us help unleash your brand image, connect with your customers and gain their loyalty.