Google’s day of reckoning has come and gone and we’re all still here...but is your audience?
By now we all know how important responsive design is for your website, but after Google’s recent changes, it’s more crucial than ever. Their new algorithm is here to stay, and if you aren’t keeping up with the mobile-friendly crowd, you might get lost in the shuffle.
What is “Mobilegeddon”?
On April 21, 2015 Google rolled out an algorithm update that favors mobile-friendly sites in searches made on mobile devices. In other words, if your website isn't optimized for mobile, your mobile search ranking could get clobbered. Nicknamed “Mobilegeddon” by the hyperbole-prone media, this update may not be as scary as it sounds (but it's still pretty bad).
What does this mean for you?
Well, the good news is that this algorithm update currently doesn’t affect desktop or tablet searches, so, depending on your user base, your search ranking might not be doomed. The bad news is that, according to Google, “more Google searches take place on mobile devices than on computers in 10 countries including the US and Japan.” This means that if you aren’t thinking of optimizing your website for mobile, you’d better think again. In recent years, mobile browsing has skyrocketed and, today, websites that aren’t mobile-friendly are rapidly losing consumers.
“If you aren’t thinking of optimizing your website for mobile, you’d better think again” TWEET THIS
But it’s important to realize that this is only one algorithm in a sea of Google algorithms and, if you’re in a niche industry, site content could still win out. According to a Google spokeswoman’s email to Re/code, “While the mobile-friendly change is important, we still use a variety of signals to rank search results. The intent of the search query is still a very strong signal—so if a page with high-quality content is not mobile-friendly, it could still rank high if it has great content for the query.” Good to keep in mind, but do you really want to chance it?
So...what can you do?
According to a recent study by Portent, up to 40% of popular websites don’t meet Google’s black or white definition of “mobile-friendly.” Sites with everything from too-small text size to slow-loading pages, failed Google’s mobile-friendly litmus test. Thankfully, Google has provided us with a link to their Mobile-Friendly Test. So, before you start to panic, see how your site measures up!
TIP: Take Google's Mobile-Friendly Test to see how "mobilegeddon" affects your site.