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Google's Mobile Friendly Update: Is Your Website Ready?

One of Google’s biggest updates will begin to roll out on April 21st, in which the mobile-friendliness of websites will become a huge part of its search algorithm.  Google has stated that the upcoming mobile-friendliness based update will be bigger than the Panda and Penguin updates, so expect it to have a significant impact on the search results you will see.

We know that the competition is difficult enough to get targeted visitors to your site. If you are not prepared, you could be missing out on over half of all searches for your market.

Perhaps you recall seeing drops in traffic due to a Google Panda Penalty that look similar to this:

Google Panda Penalty Traffic Drop

You can avoid this from happening to your site! The solution is very simple:

As you continue reading, we will be discussing what it means to be mobile friendly and what you can do to ensure that your SEO and web design are optimized:

Exactly How This Can Impact Your Business

There are many reasons why we should take this update very seriously. Mobile traffic currently accounts for more than 50% of the all search engine traffic. In some niches, it accounts for close to 60%.

This means, if you are prepared by ensuring that your site is mobile responsive, your business can have a huge advantage over those less prepared website owners.

What Does It Mean To Be Mobile Friendly or Mobile Responsive?

Mobile responsiveness refers to how your site reacts when retrieved on a mobile phone or tablet. If your website display does not change, it can be very difficult for a visitor to read or navigate. Ideally, your site should change to be presented in a way in which mobile users can easily read your content and navigate throughout your web pages. See these examples:

Mobile responsive examples

Mobile friendliness is also used when referring to how a site displays, but also has to do with optimization of which information is displayed and how users can interact with that content. For example, having a mobile responsive site that simply changes the dimensions of the information displayed to fit the screen size of the device being used is not going to be enough.

You will want to ensure that the visitor can read your content and contact you easily. Here are some examples:

mobile friendly vs non-mobile friendly

Mobile responsiveness has been a ranking factor for some time now, but the emphasis being placed on this factor is being greatly amplified. Google wants to ensure that all websites found in its search results via mobile devices are properly viewable.

Google wants to give people what they are looking for… don’t you?

With that being said, mobile-friendliness is going to be the #1 ranking factor for mobile searches. If you want to ensure that your site can be found, you will need to make certain to prepare your site adequately for the upcoming update. Otherwise you are bound to lose out. Even if you rank #1 right now, you stand to lose more than half of your targeted search volume.

Ensure that your website is mobile friendly according to Google’s standards by clicking here.

If it is not, continue reading…

There are a few ways in which you can take advantage of the upcoming Google mobile-friendly updates. Here are some tips:

Build a More Responsive Website

In the past, it was common to create a separate .mobi website where one could host their mobile content for their mobile visitors. However, with the advances in responsive website design and the progressive enhancement that it brings, it is very possible to make your website easy to render across a multiplicity of devices.

The responsive design automatically adjusts the size of your screen to the screen resolution of the mobile device. Irrespective of the size, you will be able to get a uniform rendering of the content.

Optimize the speed of your website

Mobile internet access is generally not as fast as that generally delivered by fiber-optic cable. There are mobile devices that are connected to the ultra-fast 4G cellular networks, but these are only a minority of devices, and the 4G cellular networks do not cover a majority of places.

In order for you to overcome this infrastructural handicap, it is important to invest in a fast-loading website that is easily accessible on both the 3G and the 4G networks in which many of the mobile devices are connected.

If your website is responsive, then it will adjust both the layout and the size quite easily according to the device used. There are numerous services that you could use to speed up your website, but one of the most reliable is the Google PageSpeed, a Google service that allows websites to load faster.

Cleaning up your code and increasing your website load time will generally lead to better rankings in the search engine results pages. There are several tips that you can apply in order to improve the speed of your website.

For example, ensure that your hosting company has a content delivery network or the CDN. This is a feature that will store your website content on the dedicated servers so that it loads faster. Pick a good and reliable hosting provider and get a good web developer to clean up your code, as messier coding will result in slow loading websites.

Make the Changes Early

The clock is already ticking towards April 21st, so it is important to make these changes before the actual roll-out of the Google mobile-friendliness update. It is better to be prepared early rather than play the catch up game once your website has been left behind.

It is important that your website gets crawled when these changes take place so that you can quickly be at an advantage after the updates take place.

 

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