Google Makes Mobile-Friendliness a Ranging Signal
by Kevin Hofer
In February of this year, Google announced notable changes to its search algorithms that will affect search results rankings on mobile devices. The search engine giant will now take into consideration a site's "mobile friendliness" as one of its ranking signals.
As the ubiquity of mobile devices has increased over time, Google has made a number of changes to try and improve search results for mobile users. Their belief is that "users should get the most relevant and timely results, no matter if the information lives on mobile-friendly web pages or apps." As an example of this, late last year, Google began adding a "mobile-friendly" label to search results on mobile devices. This is meant to indicate to users that the site they are about to visit would render well on their mobile device's screen.
Beginning today - referred to by many as "mobilegeddon" - Google is rolling out these changes in what is likely one of their biggest algorithm updates in years. The use of mobile-friendliness as a ranking signal is being expanded. In Google's words, this change "will have a significant impact in our search results".
So, what does this mean for you?
Ultimately, that question is answered by how mobile-friendly your site is in the eyes of Google. Even if you believe your site "looks good" on a mobile device, that might not be good enough. The best thing to do is run your site through the "Mobile-Friendly Test" tool that Google provides:
Mobile-Friendly Test Tool
If your site is deemed to be mobile friendly,
you will see a message like the
If your site is not optimized for consumption on mobile devices, you will see a message similar to the following:
If your site is not flagged as mobile-friendly, it is possible that your ranking in search results on mobile devices could be affected negatively.
If you have any questions about how this change might impact you, or if you have questions on how to make your site more mobile-friendly, shoot us an email or give us a call. For more details on the algorithm changes, check out this blog post from Google:
Finding more mobile-friendly search results