Google’s New Mobile-Friendly Website Search Algorithm

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Google announced a new mobile-friendly ranking algorithm. This change will hurt search rankings for websites that aren’t mobile-friendly.

(Find out if Google thinks your website is mobile-friendly later in this post.)

In their ongoing efforts to improve the experience for users, there are big changes coming. Google says they want to make it easier for users “to get relevant, high quality search results that are optimized for their devices.”

You may have already noticed sites marked as “Mobile-friendly” in Google search results on your phone.

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Google introduced that mobile-friendly label last November. But, there are much bigger changes on the way.

Recently, Google announced effective April 21, they would be making adjustments to their algorithms. The algorithms determine how they rank websites.

The change expands the usage of mobile-friendliness as a ranking signal. Google also said this change will have “a significant impact” in search results.

What does this mean for your website?

Google is going beyond just labeling sites as mobile-friendly. The algorithm change will affect mobile rankings.

This means Google will give an extra boost to sites with a mobile design so they will rank better in mobile search. If your website isn’t mobile-friendly your rankings will suffer.

Since early 2014, mobile internet usage has been greater than usage on PCs. You can understand why Google wants to be sure to provide the best results and user experience.

The amount of traffic a website gets from users on phones and tablets varies, but we often see it run from 40% to 70%.

A review of your website’s analytics will show how much of your website’s traffic comes from mobile. That can give you some idea of the impact this change could have on your business.

Imagine if your search rankings plummeted or if searchers weren’t able to find your site using a mobile device.

Needless to say, if your website isn’t ready for mobile, now is the time to do something about it.

What’s required for Google to consider your website mobile-friendly?

There are four factors provided by Google that play a large role in determining if a site is mobile-friendly:

  • Avoid software that’s not usually found on mobile devices (like Flash)
  • Use text that is readable without requiring the user to zoom in
  • Re-size the content to fit the user’s screen, so they don’t have to scroll horizontally or zoom
  • Place links far enough apart so that it’s easy to tap on the correct link

Does Google think your website is mobile-friendly?

Google is already sending out notices via Webmaster Tools if they found mobile usability issues on your site.

But, you can find out right away if Google thinks your website is mobile-friendly.

Test your website using Google’s own mobile website test. Enter your website address, click the Analyze button and you’ll get the results in a few seconds. Go ahead, test it. I’ll wait here for you.

Did Google say your website is not mobile-friendly?

If so, it’s time to contact Required Media about mobile-friendly website design and development services.

We have plans available that can convert your current website into a mobile-friendly one. If you need a new responsive website design, we can deliver that too.

 

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