If you own a website or blog, then any mention of algorithm changes will send a cold shiver down your back. For months now, the internet has been abuzz with the news of a Google algorithm overhaul.
With an overwhelming number of internet users accessing their favorite sites via devices like mobile phones, Google is finally implementing algorithms that favor sites that are mobile friendly.
On the 21st of April 2015 these algorithms will come into effect, and websites will see their rankings rise or fall depending on their mobile compatibility.
Here is a statement posted on the Google Webmaster Central Blog:
Starting April 21, we will be expanding our use of mobile-friendliness as a ranking signal. This change will affect mobile searches in all languages worldwide and will have a significant impact in our search results. Consequently, users will find it easier to get relevant, high quality search results that are optimized for their devices.
As a business owner this is the last thing you want to hear about, especially if you have put in long hours driving traffic organically through SEO (Search Engine Optimization).
In order to ensure that Mobilegeddon does not hit you hard, look at the quick tips below to see if you are in accordance with the mobile-friendly Google Algorithms.
Are You Ready For Mobilegeddon?
If you want to check and see whether your website, landing pages, and blog are optimized for mobile use, take this quick mobile-friendly test to determine where you stand.
Once Google has analyzed your site you will get one of two messages:
- Awesome! This page is mobile friendly.
- Not mobile-friendly.
As you can deduce, the second message which appears in red is not the result you want. This message can come as a result of several factors, such as the use of flash videos, pop-ups, and small font to name a few.
If this is the message you are getting, then you need to make the following mobile-friendly changes to your website, blog, or landing pages.
Why Does Your Site Need To Be Mobile-Friendly?
There are numerous advantages of having a mobile-friendly site, including the following:
- The needs of potential customers are better met on mobile-friendly site
- Mobile-friendly sites reduce friction caused by navigating through pages on small screens
- Mobile-friendly sites have a much higher probability of converting traffic into sales
- Sites, pages, and blogs that are mobile optimized have faster load speeds
How To Make Your Site Mobile-Friendly
There is no need to freak out, optimizing your website, blog, or landing page for a mobile device does not require computer expertise. The following configurations are recognized by Google when building a mobile-friendly site:
- Responsive Web Design
This recommended design pattern retains your HTML code and your URL, regardless of whether you use a mobile, tablet, desktop, or non-visual browser. The design will quickly and efficiently adapt to the screen size of your device, allowing for mobile-friendly use.
This design works seamlessly when moving across devices, making it the best configuration for you to implement.
- Dynamic Serving
Similar to the Responsive design talked about above, dynamic serving maintains your URL. However, your HTML code will change depending on the device you are making use of. Google makes use of user-agent detection to ensure that the view you are seeing is appropriate for your device.
- This configuration is prone to errors, but will pass the mobile-friendly test
- Separate URLs
The most divergent configuration is the Separate URL configuration. In this case a different HTML code will be sent depending on your device, and separate URLs will be used. Simply put, there will be a different website for those using mobiles, and for those using desktops.
You will be redirected to the suitable URL using HTTP redirects.
- Google will need to crawl through two separate versions of your content; this is time-consuming
- If you click on a mobile link while on a desktop (link possibly shared through social media), your time on a website might be disrupted.
Understandably, Mobilegeddon in all its glory is scaring you- especially if your site is not mobile-friendly. Thankfully, you will not be permanently penalized if you do not fully comply with the Google algorithms by the 21st.
This means that if you find yourself in the position where your site is still not mobile-friendly by the deadline, you have the chance to rebuild your rankings once you have implemented mobile-friendly configurations.
Remember, mobile friendly sites drive more traffic to your site, blog, or page, by providing relevant information in a user-friendly way. This algorithm change is as much for you as it is for your customer. So start implementing the changes immediately to avoid losing traffic, conversions, and revenue.
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