April 21, 2015 Today’s the day! Google has made a major update to its mobile search algorithm that changes the order in which websites are ranked when users search for something from their mobile devices, more specifically from their phones.
This new algorithm favors mobile-friendly websites which meet certain criteria and ranking them higher in search. Websites that fail to meet the mobile-friendly standards will get demoted.
Mobile friendly sites, according to Google, meet the following criteria:
- Avoids software that is not common on mobile devices, like Flash
- Uses text that is readable without zooming
- Sizes content to the screen so users don’t have to scroll horizontally or zoom
- Places links far enough apart so that the correct one can be easily tapped
Approximately 60% of online traffic originates from mobile and Google wants users to have an optimal experience when they click on a link, regardless of the way they are accessing the Internet.
Google gave web developers and businesses ample warning by announcing these upcoming changes in February, giving everyone almost two months and ample information to make any changes necessary to keep their sites relevant in mobile search results. Regardless, today’s update is anticiapted to cause a major ranking shake-up. It has even earned the nickname “Mobilegeddon” due to apocalyptic effect it could have on millions of websites.
Businesses that depend on people finding them through localized search, local restaurants or service providers, for example who will be found by typing a service and location into Google on their phone (i.e. “auto repair Denver”) will see a decrease in foot traffic as a result of this update, if they are unprepared.
Any business could be affected, not just the smaller companies. Is your site mobile friendly? Check here to find out.
It’s simple and painless. Don’t delay. If your website isn’t mobile friendly, then you have some work to do! You may be happily surprised to find that your site is just fine the way it is, especially if (like us), you had properly set up a simple self-hosted WordPress site.
We’d love to hear your thoughts and experiences about preparing for this update. Please let us know… Was your site mobile friendly? If not, is it now?