Google is Rewarding Mobile-friendly Sites in Search Results
Google has announced that they will be using mobile-friendliness as a ranking signal from 21 April 2015. From a user point of view, when you search on a phone or tablet then more mobile-friendly sites will appear more prominently in your searches.
So if your site isn’t mobile friendly there is no better time to make the changes. You can start by testing your site using the Mobile-Friendly testand see what needs updating. For an overall look at your site you can useWebmaster Tools to give you a full report.
To put it bluntly, if your site is not optimised for mobile, you can expect to see lower rankings on Google mobile search and less traffic from mobile users. And that for many companies is a very big deal – we have many B2C clients who are seeing comfortably more than 50% of their traffic coming from mobile devices.
Google recently released a blog post on ‘Finding more mobile-friendly search results‘ and stated that it is going to make user experience easier as users will be able ‘to get relevant, high quality search results that are optimized for their devices’. With more and more people using tablets or smartphones to search the internet, Google’s view is that this change is simply reflecting customer preferences.
Google’s ranking changes may be the spur you need to sort out your mobile website, but we would strongly urge you to focus on the user experience as well as these new guidelines. You should look at your web stats data to see how customers from mobile are using your site and particularly to check that conversion rates on mobile are good.
We find that their are many small changes from a design and UX point of view that can make a huge difference to mobile conversion rates. One simple thing to focus on is the physical size of buttons and links on your mobile – the average size of an adult’s finger pad is 8 to 10mm, so your links should be at least 1cm large.
Changes to the way apps are indexed
Google have also introduced “app index” which means that deep links to your Android applications will now appear in Google Search Results’. This will affect users that have already installed your app. If you want to find how to get your app indexed by Google you can read about the update on Google’s blog post.
With there being nearly 2 billion global mobile users, it is vital to optimise your site for mobile-friendliness. The mobile marketing has continued to grow over the years and according to Smart Insights the second most popular device used to search the internet is smartphones.
‘Mobile-friendly’ sites already identified on Google
As you’ll see from the screenshot below, Google are already tagging sites with a good mobile experience ‘Mobile-friendly’. From 21 April, these sites will be ranked more prominently for searches on mobile devices.
At time of writing there are some very prominent sites – for instance, LinkedIn.com – which are currently not designated ‘mobile-friendly’. This could be an oversight but this will affect their rankings and user experience if not updated by April the 21st.
Are you concerned that your site is not optimised for mobile? If you are worried about this or any other SEO issue, please contact us today and ask how we can help.
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