Beginning April 21, 2015, Google began penalizing websites that are not “Mobile Friendly”. This means that when someone uses Google to search for a product or service, the sites that can be viewed easily using a mobile device (i.e. cell phone or tablet) will be given preference over those that are not.
Listed below is the statement from Google
“Starting April 21, we will be expanding our use of mobile-friendliness as a ranking signal. This change will affect mobile searches in all languages worldwide and will have a significant impact in our search results. Consequently, users will find it easier to get relevant, high quality search results that are optimized for their devices.” ~ Google – You can read the full article here
I Still Don’t Get It
What this means to you as a business person/website owner, is that if your website isn’t mobile friendly then you’re going to lose out on traffic. Additionally, you will notice that your rankings in the search engines will slide, diminishing the amount of traffic you will receive.
Why are they doing this?
According to surveys, nearly 60% of all website visitors are viewing web pages on some type of mobile device. Based on this survey, the use of mobile devices has begun to outnumber desktop computers when it comes to searching for things on the Internet. Google is in the business of providing the best user experience to its users and is now taking steps to improve the search experience for cell phone and tablet users.
How Do I know if My Site is Mobile Friendly?
For starters, your website must be easily readable on a mobile device. This is according to Google, not you. Now you might think that your current website is OK, but if it needs to be resized or a searcher has to move it around on their device, then your site may not be considered mobile friendly.
An easy way to know if your website will pass Google’s inspection is to test it; using the following link: https://www.google.com/webmasters/tools/mobile-friendly
This is the result that you want to see:
So What Can You Do About This?
The simple fact of the matter is that you will need to fix your website. This can be accomplished in one of three ways:
- Make your website responsive
- Use dynamic content
- Maintain two sites, one for Desktop and Mobile
Why Not Create a Responsive Design?
The most logical change that you can make to your website is to make it responsive. A responsive (or flexible) design is the type of layout that is considered standard for most webmasters today. The benefit of this type of design is that it will automatically detect what type of device is being used and the layout will then adjust the design to fit accordingly, thus making your site easy to read on a PC, cell phone or tablet.
If you were to view your own website on your home computer and then on your smartphone or tablet you can easily see how the display changes. A responsive website only requires one design and one URL. This is probably the easiest method for making your website mobile friendly. For a quick video explanation, check out my video about “Responsive Design“
You can hire someone to make the changes for you. There are several agencies (including ours) that will be more than willing to help you make your website mobile friendly. If working with an agency is not an option, then you can also do-it-yourself. There are resources on the Internet to show you how.
For a copy of my D.I.Y. eBook “The Importance of a Mobile Responsive Website“ use the sign up form in the sidebar to join our mailing list. You will receive a copy instantly when you have confirmed your subscription.
Not sure if you can accomplish this yourself? Then contact us.