Google has announced that there will be a significant change to how it ranks your website.
Google has started labeling websites that are ‘mobile friendly’ when you view search results on your mobile device.
This change began it’s roll-out from 21st of April 2015.
What will this mean for your website?
Simply put, if your website is already ‘mobile friendly’ then you should not see significant changes – you may even see an increase in your website visitors as other websites are adversely affected.
How can I tell if my website is mobile friendly?
The easiest way is to take out your smartphone and search Google for your website. If your website is ‘mobile friendly’ you will see the mobile friendly label. (see below)
How does Google determine if my website is mobile friendly?
The ‘GoogleBot’ can detect the following on your website:-
- That it does not use uncommon software on mobile devices (e.g. Flash).
- That the text is readable without having to zoom.
- That the content ‘resizes’ to the screen size of the device used to view it – so that users do not have to scroll horizontally.
- That links are far enough apart so that they can be ‘tapped’ with a finger.
What will happen if my website is not ‘mobile friendly’?
You website will continue to work as it has always done, but as this is now a ‘ranking factor’ for Google, it is reasonable to assume that websites which are ‘mobile friendly’ will perform better in search results. Those that are not may drop down the search results.
Why is Google doing this?
It makes sense.
In a world that is moving away from the desktop PC to more mobile devices (e.g. Smartphones, Tablets, iPads, Kindles), websites need to ‘work’ on these devices to best serve your website visitors and customers. It is an effort to provide a good user experience for mobile searchers.
Websites which don’t respond to different devices will not perform well and users will inevitably stop using them. It is in Google’s interest to show better performing websites in their search results.
What can I do?
If your website was built in the last couple of years there is a good chance that it is already ‘mobile friendly’. If older than that, then it is time to upgrade.
Speak to your web designer and ask about ‘mobile friendly’ and ‘responsive design’.
Find out more about how Google understands mobile users or use Google’s mobile friendly test tool to learn more about your website.
If you have any questions you can contact Scoosh by email or call 01259 726 626.
We have had many enquiries asking for how to check their websites or get more information.
We suggest the following links as useful resources:-
- Test if your website is mobile friendly
- Original Google Blog post explaining what this means
- Google search changes will promote mobile-friendly websites
- The Mobile PlayBook – An Executive Guide to Winning with Mobile
- Google website dedicated to understanding the shift to mobile friendly websites
- Great and Comprehensive Article on Mobile Friendly Websites by Search Engine Watch
- Will this change by Google crush small businesses – article from Business Insider
- Google Blog Post about the mobile-friendly update
- #MobileMadness – Googles Campaign to help you get your website mobile
Google believes that the shift to mobile is a fundamental change in how our customers interact with our businesses – as they say ‘Businesses that understand this will win’