You have probably heard by now how important it is for your site to be mobile-friendly, especially with the rising usage of mobile devices (which can now account for +50% of web traffic for many large websites).
Well it’s about to get extra important. Starting April 21st, a site that isn’t mobile friendly will be impacted on Google’s Search Engine Results Page (SERP). They will start to give preferential rankings to mobile-friendly sites when people search on their mobile devices.
What does it mean to be Mobile-Friendly?
Essentially, in order for a site to be mobile-friendly a user would need to have an easy time to navigate and read. These questions might help in determining if your site is mobile-friendly:
- Do the fonts scale for easy reading? Forcing users to pinch the screen to zoom in and out is not mobile-friendly.
- Is it easy to click links and buttons? Sometimes buttons can be placed too close to other buttons making navigation cumbersome on mobiles.
- Does your site heavily use Flash? If so, it might be time for a redesign as Flash cannot be seen on most mobiles (Google cannot crawl an all-Flash site either).
- Does your site automatically redirect mobile visitors to the mobile site? If you have a separate mobile subdomain, users would need to be redirected to it automatically.
- Does your site load slowly on mobile? Large images and bloated code could contribute to slow load times on mobile.
A great way to test whether your site meets Google’s mobile optimization standards is by using two of their tools. The Mobile Usability Report, found in your Google Webmaster Tools, and their Mobile-Friendly Test tool. They both are great resources in determining what areas need to be optimized in order for your site to be mobile-friendly.
Instead of building an entirely separate mobile site, utilizing responsive design is the current dominant trend. Sites will scale and adjust the layout automatically based the device that is accessing your site – desktop, tablet or mobile.
If you feel your site is in need of mobile-optimization, please contact us today. We’ve got the team that can make the necessary updates and help retain your mobile SERP rankings.