It’s been obvious for a while that more and more people are searching for information and even buying products on their mobiles. If you’ve ever visited a website on your mobile phone you’ll know how frustrating it is to try and read small print on a small screen or scroll from side to side to see what’s what. On the other hand, sites that are mobile-friendly are great to navigate and make it easy to access just the information you need.
That’s why Google’s mobile friendly algorithm update is very timely indeed. Coming into force on 21st April, it could have a serious impact on any webmasters who don’t yet have a mobile-friendly website design. Put simply, these websites are not likely to be ranked as highly in search results as they were before.
Is this good news?
It’s good news for those who regularly search for websites using a mobile device. It’s also good news for those who are confident their own websites are mobile-friendly. However if you are behind the times and your sites are not yet able to be comfortably viewed on a mobile device, now is the time to do something about it. If you don’t you could end up finding your sites and pages start sinking in the search results.
What should you do?
The first thing to do (aside from not panicking of course) is to run the mobile-friendly test provided by Google. This can be found at https://www.google.com/webmasters/tools/mobile-friendly/. If your website doesn’t pass the test, you’ll know you have to do something about it. The good news is the results page does provide some pointers on what the problems are if your site doesn’t pass muster.
You need to aim for a responsive design in order for your website to stand a chance of ranking well in the future. It’s easy to be frustrated at Google and the latest round of changes, but that’s not a positive way to think. Instead, think about how much more traffic you might get – and how many more potential customers you may reach – with a mobile-friendly website. If you haven’t yet got around to creating such a website, now is definitely the time to do it.
The benefit of a responsive design is that every visitor – regardless of whether they’re on a PC, a tablet or a mobile – will see the best site layout for them. You don’t have to worry about maintaining a mobile site as well as your regular site either. You have just one fully-responsive site that does the trick every time.
We’re right on top of this roll-out from Google now, but it will take some time to come completely into effect. Therefore you shouldn’t delay if you have a website that you know will be punished by this new algorithm. Take the opportunity to make customer-friendly changes now and keep Google happy too. In the end it can only be of benefit to your own website and business.