Optimizing your site for mobile. It’s something we talk about. A lot.
Why do we talk about it so much? Because it matters to your prospective customers and, more than ever, it matters to search engines as well.
Let’s start with your customers. Today, more than 57 percent of all web traffic originates from smartphones and tablets. This means that more than one out of every two buyers who come to your site will be visiting from a mobile device. If your site looks bad on mobile, then those buyers are more likely to take their business elsewhere.
If meeting the needs and expectations of your buyers wasn’t reason enough to ensure your site is mobile optimized, Google just provided another nudge in that direction.
Last week, the search giant began sending emails to companies and webmasters alerting them that their sites have been migrated to mobile-first indexing. If your site isn’t mobile-friendly, this should serve as a wake up call to finally make the transition.
What Is Mobile-First Indexing?
In order to determine which sites rank for different keywords and queries, Google routinely “crawls” sites across the web. These crawls allow Google to index the billions of sites around the world. Historically, this process focused exclusively on the desktop version of a site.
However, because more users now browse on mobile devices, Google is shifting to mobile-first indexing. This means that Google will primarily use the mobile version of sites for indexing and determining search engine rankings.
Will This Impact Your SEO?
It’s always hard to predict just how changes to Google’s algorithm will impact SEO. However, there are some clear implications of the shift to mobile-first indexing.
Sites with better mobile experiences will likely receive a rankings boost for searches performed on both desktop and mobile devices. Conversely, sites with poor mobile experiences could see their rankings decline.
What Should You Do Now?
Keep in mind that the new protocol is “mobile-first indexing” and not “mobile-only indexing.” This means that, if you have a desktop-only site, then Google will still index and rank your page — you won’t disappear. However, you will likely see your rankings and traffic decline as Google gives more visibility to mobile-optimized sites.
For Google, the move to mobile-first indexing will be a process, with experts estimating that migrating all sites could take the better part of a year. However, the change is coming, and you want to make sure that you are prepared with a mobile optimized site.
Also read: Get ready for the Amazon ad network?