Arriving April 21, 2015: Google’s New “Mobile Friendly” Update

Mobile |

Mobile Phone

The day has finally arrived.

We all knew it was coming – it was just a matter of time.

The fact that 5 billion people worldwide own a cell phone, three out of five product searches are conducted using a cell phone, and 70% of mobile searches are followed by an action (i.e. a purchase) this update was inevitable.

The Google Mobile Update and Its Impact on Your Business

Google announced: “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.”

Google is releasing an update to its mobile search algorithm that serves to answer the question – is your website mobile friendly? Sites that are found to be mobile optimized will benefit from increased visibility on the mobile search engines results page. Mobile optimization was previously considered merely a competitive advantage – now, it is essential to stay relevant in the current environment.

Businesses large and small will need to adapt – and adapt quickly. Considering the rise of mobile usage and the mobile consumer, this update will impact businesses across the board. If a business’s website is not mobile friendly, they run the likely risk of ceasing to exist within mobile search engine results.

You can leverage Google’s many resources to determine if your website is mobile friendly. Here are two of the most helpful resources available:

– Google Mobile Friendly Test Tool

– Google PageSpeed Insights

Tips on Making Your Website Mobile Friendly

How do you ensure that your site is mobile optimized? The c-leveleddevelopment team believes that the following best practices will ensure your site is ready for Google’s new mobile algorithm:

– Landing Page Load Time – Landing page load time is critical. A mobile landing page that takes too long to load may drive consumers to leave the page or hit the back button.

– Simplified Navigation – This recommendation, along with minimal scrolling, clear menu hierarchy, and vertical page layout is highlighted in Google’s mobile best practices. Simplifying the mobile experience will ensure a better experience for the consumer.

– Relevant, Original Content – Relevance has always been highly important to Google when determining quality score and hierarchy on the results page. As always, ensure that your mobile landing page contains content that a user will find relevant and useful.

– Avoid Common Mobile Website Mistakes – This includes blocked JavaScript/CSS/image files, faulty redirects, mobile-only 404s and unplayable content to name a few. In addition, do not include Flash or pop-ups on your mobile site.

– Optimized Titles and Meta Descriptions – Similar to the importance of title and meta descriptions on computers, ensure optimization to your mobile website as well.

– Responsive Design – Google recommends responsive design, meaning that the same URL reconfigures its content and layout to any type of device; desktop, laptop, tablet, mobile. However, it is not known whether the type of mobile design will be a factor in this algorithm.

Benefits to the Consumer and the Business

C-leveled believes that Google truly revolutionizes the way we view the internet, and this update is no different. While Google will reward proactive businesses that jumped on the mobile bandwagon early, the consumer benefits as well through improved mobile browsing and transacting online which, in turn, may likely improve business conversion, interaction, and engagement rates on mobile.

How many times have you landed on a mobile website that… took… too… long… to… load?

How many times have you visited a website that was difficult to read with small fonts, crammed together and buttons that were too small?

How many times have you visited a website where you had to scroll vertically <– back and forth –> to read the main content?

The new Google Mobile Update will ensure these scenarios are a thing of the past.

We have all experienced poor mobile web experiences, and this update seeks to eradicate them. Google wants to empower users to search, click and purchase in an easy, seamless manner. Cheers to Google for encouraging businesses to become more consumer-centric by bringing ease of use to mobile devices.

If your business needs assistance building a mobile friendly website, c-leveled can help. From optimizing your website to providing relevant, original content with simplified navigation, our team covers it all.