Mobile Friendly Websites and Google Search Results
Having a mobile friendly website has been important for YEARS. As I've written before, there are many reasons why responsive websites are better, but when Google makes this labeling change for their search results, it only increases importance.
Google's Search Ranking Changes:
Beginning on April 21st, Google is taking yet another step towards giving mobile friendly sites a higher ranking in their search algorithm. The issue, as stated in their blog post back in November, is that if someone is searching Google on a mobile device and they are sent to a non-mobile friendly website, then that is a disservice to their customer. Essentially, Google believes (rightly so, in my opinion) that they are doing a providing a better service to people when they guarantee that the results they give in searches are friendly to all devices.
What This Means for You:
Although responsive design has a lot to do with being mobile friendly, it's not everything. Google is also looking at your website to find other mobile friendly features. Here's the list of things Google is checking before giving your website it's stamp of approval (taken from their blog post):
- Avoids software that is not common on mobile devices, like Flash
- Uses text that is readable without zooming
- Sizes content to the screen so users don't have to scroll horizontally or zoom
- Places links far enough apart so that the correct one can be easily tapped
You can find more features of a mobile friendly website on this other post I've written. Basically, if you want your website in good standing with Google, these are the changes you'll have to make.
Steps to Take:
First, check your website's mobile friendly rating with Google's Mobile-Friendly Test.
Second, make changes.
As simple as that sounds, it's possible that it won't be so simple. Moving from a non-responsive to a responsive website requires a complete overhaul of your website. However, all of the other issues are simple changes.
I hope you're all ready for the mobile friendly change that's progressing, and if you're not, consider contacting me about getting a complete redesign of your website so we can get you on track with the new styles and trends and of course, mobile friendly design.