Well it’s now official. If you don’t have a website that is mobile friendly you’ll be harder to find on Google.
After months of proclaiming the importance of having a mobile website, Google has finally implemented their changes that make a mobile site mandatory as part of a company’s SEO strategy. Up until last week, Google operated on the honor system allowing companies to just say their site was mobile friendly, but no more. Now Google is the sole arbiter of this issue and no longer will just take a company’s word for it.
So what’s the impact?
Effective last week searches from a smartphone will include the term—mobile friendly—in the results. By including this tag Google is betting that companies will work to make sure their site is verified as mobile friendly: that’s the carrot. There is also a stick, as the new algorithm rolls out over the next several weeks, sites that are not defined as mobile friendly will be dropped down in the search engine results list. While this is not stated specifically it is pretty much guaranteed it will happen.
However there is a silver lining here. The days of having to have a separate website done in mobile format are behind us. Many content management systems, like WordPress offer a 2-for-1 capability. Any site constructed with these tools should be set up to be “responsive.” This means that you can have one website which automatically reformats for the device being used to view it, meaning there is no longer a need to have separate desktop and mobile websites.
If you’d like to know how your site ranks use this link and enter your domain name.
If you need other reasons to value a mobile website consider the following:
- Mobile traffic leads the Internet
- Companies with responsive design websites reduce their bounce rate by 11% on average
- 66% of all email is opened on a mobile device, think what it means for a client to open an email on their smartphone and not be able to read your website when they click there.
- In a 2013 survey Google reported that 90% of executives used their mobile devices for research and 34% said they abandoned sites that were not responsive