In an effort to improve its service for mobile users, Google has announced that it will be launching a new search algorithm on 21st April 2015. The new algorithm will use mobile-friendliness as a ranking factor and will therefore be elevating the rankings of responsive websites in its mobile search results.
Today so many people use their mobile phones to surf the web, making mobile-friendly sites an essential.
With an increasing number of people using their mobile phones to surf the Internet, it only seemed sensible that Google would find a way to offer a better mobile experience. For a while the company has been dropping hints that a new algorithm was on the cards; first with the ‘mobile-friendly’ tags it added to it’s mobile search results last year and then later with the release of it’s Mobile-Friendly Test Tool. Experts were speculating that it was only a matter of time before Google released a new search algorithm, so it shouldn’t come as the biggest of shocks!
What is the purpose of the mobile search algorithm?
From 21st April, Google will begin using mobile-friendliness as a ranking signal. For now the changes will only affect mobile searches, however there is a possibility of it being used on all searches in the future.
The benefit for mobile users is that they will now receive search results that are relevant and optimised for their mobile devices. Those with mobile-friendly websites will also be able to benefit from higher rankings and increased traffic to their sites.
Whilst the change is certainly positive for both mobile users and mobile site owners, it could also be argued that it’s a positive change for Google too. By providing a better experience for mobile users, they have something that gives them a competitive edge over competitors such as Bing and Yahoo.
Will it penalise non mobile-friendly websites?
Whilst Google’s new search algorithm will definitely increase the rankings of websites it deems to be mobile-friendly, there has been no suggestion that non mobile-friendly websites will be penalised. But keep in mind that just because non mobile-friendly sites aren’t dropping off the SERPs, it doesn’t mean they won’t see their rankings fall. If competitors have mobile-friendly sites and offer excellent content, there’s a high chance that they’ll leap ahead of you on the SERPs for your keywords.
Responsive website designs adapt to the device they’re being viewed on to offer the best user experience.
With this in mind, you may want to consider going responsive. Formation design responsive websites that will make you eligible for Google’s ranking benefits, whilst also allowing you to future proof your website and offer a better user experience, generating sales and increasing your profit.
Is the 21st April a deadline?
Don’t panic if you haven’t already got a responsive websites, there’s still plenty of time! Remember, the 21st April is not a deadline – it’s a launch date. Google has openly said that the new search algorithm will work in real-time so as soon as its spiders have crawled your website and noticed its new responsive design, you will start benefiting from elevated rankings in mobile searches. Having said this, it makes sense to go responsive ASAP, so you can start benefiting sooner!
The takeaway from this article is that a responsive, mobile-friendly website is no longer a luxury but a necessity. If you want to maintain your competitive edge, benefit from increased mobile search rankings and offer an optimal experience for mobile users, it’s time to make the change and go responsive! There’s never been a better time to do it. Make sure to contact us regarding your website and see how Formation can help you get responsive!