Why you should make your website mobile-friendly now
Just yesterday, Google made an announcement that should dispel any doubts about whether to act now in revamping your website to make it mobile-friendly. Here is what Google said on March 16, 2016 in its blog post Continuing to make the web more mobile friendly:
Today we’re announcing that beginning in May, we’ll start rolling out an update to mobile search results that increases the effect of the ranking signal to help our users find even more pages that are relevant and mobile-friendly.
That means that Google will start penalizing websites that are not easy to use on mobile devices by lowering their rankings on its mobile search results pages.
How it started
Google started their push for mobile-friendly websites a couple of years ago with a series of updates.
1. Google update of November 18, 2014 Helping users find mobile-friendly pages:
Have you ever tapped on a Google Search result on your mobile phone, only to find yourself looking at a page where the text was too small, the links were tiny, and you had to scroll sideways to see all the content? This usually happens when the website has not been optimized to be viewed on a mobile phone. This can be a frustrating experience for our mobile searchers. Starting today, to make it easier for people to find the information that they’re looking for, we’re adding a "mobile-friendly" label to our mobile search results.
2. Google update of February 26, 2015 Finding more mobile-friendly search results:
... 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.
3. Google update of April 21, 2015 Rolling out the mobile-friendly update:
We’re boosting the ranking of mobile-friendly pages on mobile search results. Now searchers can more easily find high-quality and relevant results where text is readable without tapping or zooming, tap targets are spaced appropriately, and the page avoids unplayable content or horizontal scrolling.
Call to action
Google itself does not make websites more mobile friendly, but it nudges you – website owners, creators and publishers – to make your websites mobile friendly. The translation of the Google announcement is this: either you hurry up and make your website mobile friendly, or we will penalize your website by lowering its search ranking.
Even if Google wasn't doing this, it's important to think about your website's usability, not just its searchability. Today, more and more people use mobile devices to access the web. Millennials are nearly 100% on mobile devices. Let’s say you have a website that is not mobile-friendly; when people find it on their mobile device, they realize within seconds that it is extremely hard to navigate and use, so they depart from it in favor of a better, mobile-friendly website. You just lost a potential customer to a mobile-friendly competitor.
Most website owners and web publishers have realized the necessity and followed through with their mobile-friendly website upgrades. However, some are still falling behind; if you are one of them, now is the time to catch up.
If you are not sure whether your website is considered mobile-friendly by Google, you can check it out with this Google tool.
Lenetek offers inexpensive responsive web design solution to make your website mobile-friendly, so you are able to reach the ever-growing crowd of mobile device users.