Google has been changing up their game a bit when it comes to their openness about what it takes to really optimize a website for search engine friendliness. Their #mobilemadness push this month is one more example of how proactive they have become.
It is no secret that the SEO world has changed a great deal in the last 2 years and Google has been the driver of this change. Their stated goals are simple, to give you and I the best answer possible to every search query we make. One of their main areas of focus for the last several months has been mobile friendliness.
Smartphones have become as much a part of everyday life as traditional telephones used to be. Everyone has one. Unlike traditional cell phones smartphones have the ability to access the Internet pretty much the same way that a computer does. As we move toward the Internet of Everything and more and more of the devices around us are connected to the web the functionality of devices like smartphones in connecting us with the world around us will increase.
Even now, if you own a smartphone, chances are that you use it to find things and places in the real world while you are out and about. A restaurant, an event, a better price on an item in a store, these are just a few of the things that people use their smartphone for every day.
As a business owner it is too easy to say ‘well, we don’t sell anything online so we do not need a mobile optimized site or “we show up on the first page of mobile search so people will find us”, but very soon that may not be the case.
Google has been slowly ramping up the push to make the Web mobile friendly. First they announced that mobile friendliness would be a ranking factor in a site’s position in search results. Then they provided the mobile friendliness testing tool in google Webmaster Tools to make it easier for website owners to test the mobile friendliness of their website.
Now they have put together an entire month of events and information geared toward helping website owners achieve mobile friendliness (#mobilemadness). At the end of the month the new ranking kicks in. The choice is obvious, get mobile friendly or get left behind. If your site already shows on page one of search results in smartphones in your area and you do not make sure it is mobile friendly it may disappear from that favored position.
Let me clarify something here, just because your website is responsive
does not mean that is is mobile friendly. I have seen a lot of sites that are built to be responsive in general terms and do not really look that bad on a mobile device fail the Google mobile friendly test. Responsive just means that the content on the site attempts to adapt to screen size. The criteria Google uses to determine mobile friendliness goes beyond that though and look at elements of the site in terms of usability. Once again, user experience is the key factor in the equation. If your menu items are too close together and it is difficult to use them with your finger on a mobile device screen then it is not mobile friendly.
Outside of considerations of user experience, like anything else it is a matter of competition. There are only so many spots on the first page of search results. There are even fewer available spots on a mobile device than there are on the search results page on a standard computer display. If you have competitors chances are that you have already invested time and effort into achieving and maintaining the ranking that you have in search results. If you do not take the #mobilemadness challenge this month you risk losing all of that hard work (at least on mobile devices).
If you would like to make sure that your website is indeed mobile friendly we would be happy to evaluate your site for you and make recommendations on what needs to be done in order to achieve mobile friendly status. Just call, email or message us with your site URL and contact information and we will cut through all of this #mobilemadness for you and bring your website up to speed. Below is a handy contact form.[contact-form-7 id=”2420″ title=”#mobilemadness Contact Form”]