On Tuesday, Google launched its much anticipated algorithm update, which has been referred to as Mobilegeddon due to the drastic changes many people expect from it. But contrary to the rumors that Google will be delisting some sites altogether, the reality is that the only change will be a lower search engine ranking if your site is not mobile friendly. And luckily, this is a pretty easy fix. So before you join the people who are dreading what this update will do to their mobile-unfriendly site, consider what you need to know about Mobilegeddon and how to get through it unscathed.
As more people use their smartphone to access the internet, it has becoming increasingly important that mobile sites be just as functional and user friendly as desktop sites. After all, a little over half of all internet searches are performed using mobile devices, so catering to mobile users makes sense.
This means Google strives to reward websites that are optimized for mobile, and penalize the ones that aren’t, and that’s where Mobilegeddon comes in. Websites that work well on a smartphone will do better in the Google search rankings than sites that don’t. More specifically, mobile-unfriendly websites that are currently number 1 could fall to number 10 pretty quickly once Googlebots notice how bad they look on mobile devices.
If you’re not exactly sure if Mobilegeddon will affect you, it’s time to figure out if your site is optimized for mobile. One of the simplest ways to do this is to try viewing your site on your phone to determine whether it is just as usable as the desktop version. Here’s a hint: if you have to continuously scroll down to read a single page, or zoom in to click a link, it’s probably not mobile friendly.
But Google isn’t here to make life harder for you. In fact, the whole goal of Mobilegeddon is to make it possible for your target audience to use your website regardless of which device they’re using, likely leading to more sales for you in the long run. So it should come as no surprise that Google has made it easy for you to find out immediately if your site looks good on a smartphone.
All you have to do is let Google’s Mobile-Friendly Test analyze your web address. If it passes the test, you’ll be alerted right away. If it doesn’t, the results will let you know why. This is an alert message you might see with some of the reasons that your site is not optimized for mobile:
If it turns out that your website is not yet mobile friendly, you’re not alone. According to USA Today, major companies like California Pizza Kitchen, Versace, and See’s Candies will also need to update their sites. In fact, the same goes for about 40% of websites that were ranked near the top prior to Tuesday. Luckily, the issue is easy to address.
You can start by contacting the host for your website. Some companies, such as GoDaddy, can make any website mobile friendly by rebuilding it for a small fee. You can also get a mobile version of your site, complete with features like an interactive map and a click-to-call button, from Duda for a fee of about $60 a year.
Of course, you can always simply hire a web developer to create a mobile site for you. Regardless of the route you take, you should be able to see the results you’re looking for soon after you get a mobile site. According to Search Engine Land, once you make the necessary changes, it could take a few hours or it could take up to three days for Google to recognize that your site is now optimized for mobile. But either way, you’ll be one step closer to improving your mobile search rankings and being able to say you survived Mobilegeddon!
Is your website mobile friendly? If not, what kind of impact has Mobilegeddon had on your rankings?
By Autumn Rivers – Contributing Writer, TheMarketingScope
Email: firstname.lastname@example.org, Twitter: @AutumnEditing