What You Need To Know About Mobile-First Indexing
Earlier this year, Google announced that they will begin rolling out mobile-first indexing, but what exactly does this mean? Essentially, Google has been paying attention to where the majority of search traffic is coming from.
Devices such as cell phones and tablets now make up over 50% of search traffic. Over time, this will have a direct impact on a website’s SEO. So what does this mean for you, and what can you do to prepare for it? Let’s go into a bit more detail about how this may impact your organic traffic.
Why Do You Need A Mobile Friendly Site?
Make no mistake, if your desktop site is not mobile friendly, it is time to rebuild with an updated responsive format. Search engines will soon begin penalizing you if your website is not user-friendly on mobile devices. Google has been threatening this for what seems like years, but it’s just a matter of time before you’ll actually see your SEO worsen because of your non-responsive website.
Concentrating on one responsive website will give your business the best organic results. A responsive design gives you the benefit of adjusting to mobile screen sizes, and also allows you to concentrate all of your SEO optimizations to one site. The easier a site is to use on a mobile device, the bigger the reward for you. Even though usability carries more of a benefit than ever before, things like quality content, page speed, title tags, and basic SEO necessities still play the biggest role.
One thing that Google is focusing most on is user accessibility. When you design a website that’s responsive, it’s the most user-friendly format. A truly responsive website will give users a seamless experience across all devices. The research process usually starts on one device, like a smartphone on a lunch break.
Then, someone will get home and continue looking at a product or service on their desktop computer. They may even decide they want to browse more on their tablet while they are working out. This is why it is so crucial to have a responsive website. If your site doesn’t perform well on a mobile device, you’re losing that lead instantly.
Now, there is no reason to panic if you do not have a separate mobile site online. A completely separate mobile site will usually mean the desktop version of your site doesn’t have any business being indexed by mobile search engines. An updated responsive design will work just as well as, if not better than, a completely separate mobile site.
From the user accessibility side, it makes more sense to have a responsive website, rather than a separate website only for mobile. You want users to not even notice that they’ve switched devices to look at your website. Mobile websites often contain less information than the desktop version, which can be frustrating during the research phase.
The mobile-first indexing is basically giving mobile usability the upper hand as compared to a site’s desktop user-friendliness. With this new outlook, it is more important than ever to make sure your website is optimized properly for both the desktop and mobile spectrum.
What Makes A Site Mobile Friendly?
For SEO reasons, it is important that your site be as user-friendly and informative as possible. Having easy-to-read text, as well as simple and effective navigation is important for users on mobile devices. Site speed on a mobile device plays a large role in your rankings as well.
With an increased focus on mobile optimization, a balance between usability and high-quality content will give you an edge in the rankings. This edge could be just what you need to finally rank higher than your competition! Google notices everything, so mobile-first indexing can either make or break your SEO rankings.
Google is recognizing the trend of devices used when searching the internet and their job is to make sure that users have the best experience possible. With mobile optimization on the rise, it still will not give you a complete advantage in the SEO world. You may have a site that is very user-friendly for mobile devices but the SEO basics are still needed for positive results. Make sure to check out our blog post that contains our SEO Checklist that will give you what you need to be successful in the SEO world.