Google Announces Mobile-Friendliness As A Ranking Signal
How Mobile-Friendly is Your Website?
Google webmaster central blog has announced plans for website mobile-friendliness as a search engine ranking factor.
In previous articles we've mentioned the importance of making sure your site is mobile friendly and how to test your site using Google's mobile testing tool. With this announcement from Google it's vital to take action if your site doesn't meet the standards both the search engines and your site visitors now expect in terms of having a site that delivers a great mobile user experience to ensure you aren't penalised in the search engine rankings.
Starting on April 21, Google will be expanding their use of mobile-friendliness as a ranking signal. This change will affect mobile searches in all languages worldwide and will have a significant impact on Google search results. Consequently, users will find it easier to get relevant, high quality search results that are optimised for their devices.
What Does "Mobile Friendly" Look Like
A website optimised for mobile is a website that displays well and is easy to use on a mobile device (tablets and mobiles). With ever increasing numbers of people accessing the web via their mobile devices, updating your site for mobile is not only a good idea in terms of securing your search engine ranking status, it's also a good idea in terms of ensuring customer satisfaction. Below are a few basic things to look out for when building a mobile website.
Content For Mobile
As you have less screen space real estate to work with think carefully about what content you want to present to mobile users and lay it out in a way that works best for a smaller screen sizes.
It's important to make sure your text size is big enough to read on a smaller screen.
Space Between Links
Don't make it hard to click links and form buttons by having text closely packed together - leave space so fingers can easily access it.
Page Download Speed
Keep the size of your mobile pages a small as possible. Optimise code and images specifically for mobile devices.
What To Do Next
- Test your site to see whether it's considered mobile friendly by Google.
- If your site fails the mobile friendly test, check out Google webmaster tools mobile usability report (within your webmaster tools dashboard). This tool will show you common usability issues with your mobile site, so that you can fix them and improve your mobile experience for your users.
- Or if your site was never built with mobile in mind check out Google's "Get Started" guidelines on building a site that works across devices.
- Google has also put together information on mobile SEO. This will show you how to make sure your site shows up in the search results, enable you to configure your site for multiple devices and avoid common making mistakes as you build your mobile ready website.