Tuesday, April 21, 2015. That’s the day that will go down in history as Google’s "Mobilegeddon.”
On April 21, Google rolled out its mobile-friendly update globally. This means that Google is now boosting the ranking of mobile-friendly pages on mobile search results. In other words – when someone uses Google to search on their smart-phone or tablet, Google will favor websites that are optimized for their devices.
"As more people use mobile devices to access the internet, our algorithms have to adapt to these usage patterns. In the past, we’ve made updates to ensure a site is configured properly and viewable on modern devices. We’ve made it easier for users to find mobile-friendly webpages and we’ve introduced App Indexing to surface useful content from apps,” Google announced in February.
Seems like an obvious tweak, doesn’t it? After all, it will prevent you from having to tap or zoom to look at a site. From a marketing perspective, however, it’s a little scary.
Most brands rely heavily on Google to send traffic to their websites. Google controls about two-thirds of the U.S. search market, and when Google changes its code, brands have to act quickly to relearn how to optimize their sites for Google’s search.
The change will be particularly challenging for those companies who do not have a responsive – or mobile-friendly – website. If you’re part of this group, it’s time to ACT NOW.
(If this all sounds like a bunch of gibberish and you don’t know if your site is mobile-friendly or not, hop on over to Google’s Mobile-Friendly Test site. This tool lets you enter your URL and see how your site stacks up.)
If your site’s pages aren’t mobile-friendly, you’ll probably notice a significant decrease in mobile traffic from Google. You’ll also want to start thinking seriously about a website redesign. After all – more and more people are using their smart-phones and tablets to search for products and services.
When you’re working on your mobile-friendly site think about your prospects and the types of things they’d likely do on your mobile site. Are they there to research or find merchandise? Are they looking up an address or phone number on the way to your restaurant?
Mobile search now accounts for about 60 percent of online traffic to websites, and people use their devices to complete all sorts of tasks. Consider all the possible actions customers might take from a mobile device and use these ideas to guide the planning of the mobile site and the navigation menu.
If you need help, give us a shout. We’re always here to help!
Image from Google Webmaster Central Blog.