Google have started rolling out their new mobile-first indexing algorithm, the search engine has taken in to account that the vast majority of Google users are now searching on their mobile phones opposed to searching on their desktop computers. Businesses now will have to adjust to this new algorithm, even if the majority of your users are not searching for your industry or business on mobile devices you will need to take mobile search in to account for best SEO practices.
What if I don’t have a mobile site?
There is no need to panic, Google have said “If you only have a desktop site, we’ll continue to index your desktop site just fine, even if we’re using a mobile user agent to view your site.”
If you do have a mobile site, it is very important that links and content on the mobile site are similar enough to the desktop version so Google can take that the correct content and rank your site as well as it did when crawling your desktop site.
Will this affect my rankings?
It is too early to tell, Google have said that this should not change the overall rankings and they want the changes in ranking to be minimal. However, Google has also stated that any content that is not seen as “mobile friendly “will not rank as well.
How can my business get prepared for Google mobile-first index?
If you feel that your site is not quite ready to be indexed for mobile, here are a few things that you can do to immediately improve your site.
- Run a mobile friendly test to ensure your site is actually optimised for mobile use
- Have a look at the Google guide for mobile friendly websites
You can also check out the recommendations that Google is giving to webmasters in order to prepare for this change here.
What happens next?
Google started testing in November and is set to launch mobile-first indexing globally in early 2017. We will keep you updated and report back to you with the latest information regarding mobile-indexing once it all rolls out.
Over the last few months we have been working with our clients to ensure their mobile sites met Google mobile first index changes. If you have any questions or concerns about this change please get it in touch by dropping us a line here.