By Ed Nailor, Interactive Director / Creative Services
On February 26, 2015, Google announced a change to their search algorithms used to ranks sites in their search results that are geared towards the “mobile-friendly” nature of a website.
Specifically, Google stated the following:
“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.”
It is important to note one very specific detail in this announcement. Google specifically states that this will “affect mobile searches” in order to get “relevant, high quality search results that are optimized for their devices.”
Currently, Google uses modified search results based on “mobile” searches vs “desktop” searches.
When a user searches using a mobile device, the results will be different and some results that are more mobile centric, like services that may be determined to be more “local” to the user, will be displayed higher. However, the same search on a desktop may yield a different set of results.
The impact here is specific to the mobile search algorithm and will give much higher weight to websites that are optimized for mobile display. Google’s reasoning is that if you are using a mobile device, the user experience should be relative to the device you are using. Google has always placed a high value on relevant content and user experience.
Read the full announcement by Google.
SHOULD YOU BE CONCERNED?
Much of that depends on the audience you currently have. If your website is frequently visited by mobile users and you do not have a mobile experience, then yes, you should be concerned. If mobile users do not comprise a large percentage of your website visitors, then you do not need to panic at this point.
However, even though the impact today should be targeted towards mobile searches, the trend here is important to note. With more and more devices operating in more of a mobile manner, such as laptops that also serve as tablets, we do believe that this will eventually have an impact on all websites and all search results… in due time. So the importance of having a mobile version or view of a website is still very important, and should be addressed sooner than later.
Mobile friendly websites are very important to the overall success of your website business strategy. As our world is becoming more and more mobile, Creative Services has long promoted and advised on creating website with a responsive coding technique to allow websites to be easily viewed on any device. We have offered mobile views of our website products for years, and very often offer this as a special promotion for websites to help encourage the inclusion of this feature with every website sold. We believe in Mobile Friendly websites!
If you have any questions or need advice on how to approach this, please contact Creative Services and/or Big Head Web Hosting and let us help guide you through this opportunity. PHONE 704.716.1011