So your website’s made it on to the first page of Google, great! Have you tested the same search on your mobile device? If not, you may get an unpleasant surprise. As of April the 21st Google made several changes to their search algorithm, giving priority to sites which are mobile user friendly. This means if your site isn’t mobile compatible, then it will be pushed down the rankings, to make way for optimised pages.
This suggests that, “the search engine giant is sending a strong message to brands – improve your mobile sites or else…” – The Drum, April 2015.
Google warned brands in February 2015 of the upcoming changes to their mobile search results and how this may effect their ranking. It seems Google have taken the initiative in a bid to increase revenue by putting pressure on brands to make their digital presence more user friendly. It is estimated that 50% of all smartphone internet traffic passes through Google Search, so it is understandable that the multinational tech giants are ready to force the issue with brands whose sites aren’t mobile user friendly, to unlock a huge wad of potential revenue. Google claim that due to the rise of the smart phone and the wide access to the internet on mobile devices, their algorithm had to take this into account when adding and changing the way in which it operates.
However, this can be an issue for many businesses for several reasons. Simply being unaware of this change can be potentially damaging to any business, as they will have slipped down the rankings without even knowing. This adjustment has also incurred cost to many businesses, scrambling to pay for an updated site at short notice. Those who have built a strong presence via SEO, may now find their efforts redundant.
Although it may seem harsh at first, this move from Google is urging brands to update their sites and stay in line with advancements in technology and having a mobile-friendly is site is a great decision in the long run.
You can click here to check if your site is mobile-friendly.
To find out more from Google themselves, you can read their blog on the topic here.