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Google Boosts Mobile-friendly Algorithm

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On March 16, Google announced that it was going to continue making the world ‘more mobile friendly’, with an update that ‘increases the effect of the ranking signal’ on mobile phones. This will ensure better search results and higher-ranking mobile-friendly websites. They assure readers that if you have a website that’s already mobile-friendly, you won’t be impacted by the update. What they’re really saying is, if your website isn’t compatible with mobile phones, when this update rolls out, it’ll roll over you. The update will take effect in May. A new and improved algorithm Back in April 2015, Google made significant changes to its algorithm. These were designed to favour mobile friendly websites and improve the searching experience on mobile phones. This update is further proof that Google believes in a mobile-based future, instead of restricting the best internet experience to desktop computers and laptops. The original algorithm change labelled websites as mobile-friendly, improved the rank of websites with mobile capabilities and overall affected the mobile internet experience. It also promoted apps in the Google index so that they would be the first to show up on search results, which was a huge draw for app designers. A mobile-centric future Updates like this always beg the question: will mobile phones replace computers? It might even be feasible now to ask: Have they already An article at Wired.com points out the versatility of smart phones for recreational and work use, making the bold assumption that we may not even need to own computers by 2017. As long as battery power, screen size and internet capabilities increase, mobile devices including phones, tablets and iPads could surpass computers and we’ll enter a new era of technology. A graph over at Statista confirms this radical future in numbers. PC sales and shipments have been on a downward trend from 2011 to 2013, with 2013 being the lowest since 2009. The last two years have shown no improvements either. A ten percent drop in shipments occurred from 2014 to 2015, with the trend expected to continue this year. Good news for SEO and marketing As the world of business is almost entirely online, any technological update is good news—as long as you pounce on it first. The only way to harm your chances with something like Google’s new algorithm update (or any of its future improvements on the mobile searching experience) would be to refuse to keep up. If mobile-friendly websites are the way of the future, make sure your website fits these criteria. Think about the experience of using the internet on your phone. From the customer’s point of view, what could you do for your business that would benefit them? It’s important to consider the framing size of websites on mobile phones and little irritating things like autocorrect when you want to input your name and address. One huge advantage of browsing on a computer is the ease of navigating with a keyboard and mouse. Can your website be just as easily browsed around on a mobile phone? Google is betting on mobiles being the way of the future. It’s not a bad bet to make, so you might as well be on Google’s side if you’re in the SEO game.

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