April 17, 2015


Is your business suffering from a poorly functioning mobile website? If so, here’s a wakeup call: If you don’t take action to improve your website’s basic mobile functionality (i.e., appearance, content and navigability), you can expect your site to significantly drop in Google’s indexed search engine rankings—both in mobile searches and on the Web.

That’s because on Tuesday, April 21, Google will release another major update to its search engine algorithm that will address mobile best practices. And while this update, thus far, has no mention of any zoo animals in its title (unlike Google’s Panda, Hummingbird and Penguin predecessors), its impact will likely prove to be just as beastly.

In just a few days, Google will rank businesses with “mobile friendly” websites higher in its searches than companies that neglect this critical factor. For this reason, some marketers are referring to the imminent deadline as “Mobilegeddon,” as a large number of organizations are expected to be caught off-guard by the change.

Google is updating its core search engine algorithm, as always, to continue working to ensure that when end users search for information within its database, the most efficient and accurate results appear.

“When it comes to search on mobile devices, users should get the most relevant and timely results, no matter if the information lives on mobile-friendly Web pages or apps,” Google officials explained in a recent post on the Google Webmaster Central Blog. “As more people use mobile devices to access the Internet, our algorithms have to adapt to these usage patterns.”

If this announcement comes as a shock to you, it shouldn’t. Google’s decision to mandate strong mobile website functionality is right in line with the mobile-centric direction the company has been moving in over the past several years. In the last few months, marketers have been increasingly advised to overhaul their websites to better optimize for mobile usage. The main difference is that what used to be a competitive advantage in having an efficient mobile website will soon be a necessity for staying relevant on Google. The decision makes perfect sense when considering the fact that 80 percent of individuals use smartphones to search the Web—second only to the 91 percent who use PCs and laptops.

To place your business in good standing with Google before the April 21 deadline, it’s vital that you make sure your mobile website leverages texts and fonts that are readable to viewers, without having to zoom or scroll horizontally across the page. Further, links should be placed far enough apart from one another so that they can be easily tapped without being mistakenly selected. And it’s critical that you use mobile-friendly software. In other words, avoid using solutions, like Flash, that are not compatible with end-user devices.

If you’re concerned about your website’s mobile performance, Google lists some helpful resources on its Webmaster Central Blog site, such as its guide to mobile-friendly sites. This important resource offers access to Google’s official Mobile-Friendly Test, which will allow you to analyze any Web page URL to see whether its design is mobile-friendly. It also offers advice for ensuring mobile friendliness when working with developers and third-party software providers, as well as tips for taking a deep dive into the technical elements that comprise a website’s mobile friendliness. 

Looking for more information about how to rank highly on Google? Here at Content Boost, we’ve got you covered. Be sure to check out the following articles:

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