In response to an increase in the number of searches conducted from mobile devices, Google has announced it is shifting to a mobile-first initiative. As Google prioritizes to the popularity of mobile devices, online marketers must follow suit. Marketing campaigns and websites must either adapt so they’re mobile friendly, or else be prepared to be bypassed.
The mobile-first initiative
Compared to updates like Penguin, Panda and Hummingbird, Google’s mobile-first indexing has a straightforward name describing exactly what the initiative does. (The announcement was simply titled “Mobile-first Indexing,” but it came to be unofficially known as “Mobilegeddon.”)
Google is now prioritizing mobile-friendly sites over others. There are still hundreds of factors in Google’s secret algorithm, but the search giant has publically stated it is giving preference to mobile-friendly sites.
Setting sites up for mobile use
Google has provided instructions on how sites should be adapted so they’re mobile friendly, if they aren’t already. According to Google, the update doesn’t impact how sites are indexed (unless Google’s bots are blocked in a robots.txt file). Instead, it only impacts how sites are prioritized in rankings.
Responsive websites shouldn’t have to be adjusted, but there are a few technical steps to take when using separate desktop and mobile versions of a site. If using both versions for a site, each should have its own structured markup and the robots.txt file should give Google access to both versions. Additionally, both versions should be verified in Google’s Search Console.
Adapting sites to mobile algorithms
Ranking well in Google post Mobilegeddon requires more than making a few technical adjustments, though. All sites, including both responsive and non-responsive sites, should prioritize the mobile user. Sites won’t be able to hold as much information on a single page. Instead, user experience and site speed are becoming more and more important, as is the quality of content because there’s less text on a mobile screen.
If you’re afraid your organization’s site could be impacted by Google’s mobile-first indexing, we are here to help. We’ve been studying mobile sites and how to market them for years. We’ve helped many organizations develop quality mobile sites that, load quickly, communicate key information and engage users and we know how to create ads that target mobile users. Let us help your organization prepare for mobile-first indexing. Call us at 702-270-8772 today!