As what has been named in SEO circles as Mobilegeddon approaches there is no better time for those businesses who have not taken the plunge and made their website mobile optimised to do so as soon as possible.
What is Mobilegeddon we hear you ask? The latest major algorithm change from Google has been dubbed Mobilegeddon and is set to be rolled out across the globe from April 21st 2015. Until now mobile usability has been a factor in Google’s search algorithm with mobile optimised sites generally ranking higher than their non-mobile optimised counterparts. However it is set to become much much more important.
Apart from the ‘Mobile Friendly’ tag it is not clear what factors Google uses to calculate mobile ranking. As a result, many websites that are not mobile optimised, have still survived in terms of search rankings and visibility.
Enter ‘Mobilegeddon’, complete with a corny Aerosmith song (maybe the Aerosmith reference is stretching it), to change the mobile search landscape.
Often Google updates are actually only small tweaks that have little bearing on existing search results. From time to time the Google search algorithm does however release big updates such as their Panda and Penguin updates. What is upcoming on April 21st is expected to be a big one.
Zined Ait Bahajji of the Google webmaster tools trends team was overheard recently at SMX Munich saying that this new mobile-friendly algorithm change will have an even bigger impact on search rankings than either the aforementioned Panda and Penguin updates. That is no small thing. Ensuring your business has a mobile optimised site has never been more important.
Until the update happens we will have no idea of the details of the update however it is believed that Google will change the way in which they evaluate the mobile friendliness of websites. With all this in mind it is safe to assume that the majority of non-mobile optimised sites could see a big decrease in their visibility.
As Google are ever improving the quality and relevance of the content they deliver to consumers it stands to reason that such a drastic change is being rolled out for mobile given the ever increasing use of mobile in all of our daily lives. Some estimates are showing more than 60% of Google searches are mobile so improving the relevance of searches is key.
Furthermore it is expected that content living on apps that is app indexed (App indexing allows webmasters to connect pages from a website with specific content on an android app so it enables smartphone users who have your app installed to open it directly from mobile searches on Google)) is also more likely to feature prominently on mobile search results.
What does all of this mean to you? If you have a mobile optimised site it shouldn’t affect your visibility negatively from the outset. However if your business doesn’t have a mobile optimised site it’s time to ensure it does. If you are unsure, you can test pages on your site using the Google tool, Mobile-Friendly Test https://www.google.com/webmasters/tools/mobile-friendly/?utm_source=wmc-blog&utm_medium=referral&utm_campaign=mobile-friendly
If it wasn’t high on your list of importance for 2015 to have a mobile optimised site for your business this year, it really should be given the ever increasing usage of mobile across all verticals. Given that ‘Mobilegeddon’ is now also on the horizon it is even more important.