11 June 2015 by Kubiak Team
Google has announced an exciting update to its algorithm, which could knock back even the most high profile website listings…
The change puts mobile compatibility firmly in the spotlight, with Google rewarding sites that are mobile optimised for easier on-the-go use. It’s all about enhancing the user’s experience and ultimately the website owner’s online success.
With mobile search growing at ten times the rate of desktop, the shift isn’t surprising. People now want – and expect – to view websites from any device and from anywhere in the world, whether that’s on the bus, waiting for a train or standing in the checkout queue. So ensuring website owners take mobile compatibility seriously is an exciting step forward and one we’re backing with gusto.
This is one of the biggest changes to Google’s algorithms in years and is set to have significant consequences. Sites that are not mobile optimised will appear lower down on Google’s search pages, with businesses standing to lose up to 1/3rd of their traffic – a hefty penalty when you’ve spent so long building up your audience.
So how does Google test for mobile compatibility?
To put it simply, the algorithm crawls the entire site page by page, examining load times, responsive design features and mobile ‘best practice’. Amongst others, Google wants to see text sizes that are readable without zooming, well-spaced links to ensure the user taps the right one and content that fits the screen to avoid scrolling and zooming.
Why not see how your website fares with Google’s mobile-friendly test tool? Click here:
For a few years now, Kubiak have opted to incorporate the responsive approach to all our websites, rather than the ‘separate’ mobile website approach. The overriding benefit is that responsive websites work across all mobile and tablet devices, regardless of size or orientation of the screen.
And of course, usability is key as well. Google want to give web users the best experience possible, so they measure how many clicks it takes to perform a task on your website. If you underperform, you may well see your listing shoved down the pile.
Similarly, the quality of your content and consistency in updating it is important to your website’s SEO. Ultimately, Google wants to deliver the most relevant and current information to its users. So high-quality, fresh content has been an important factor for years. But you should avoid bombarding your copy with keywords – this upsets Google as much as it upsets the reader. The aim is to keyword optimise your pages without anyone noticing.
If your site isn’t responsive, it’s time for a refresh. You can either redesign and build a new website from scratch, or, because the new algorithm is applied page-by-page, focus on the home page. This is a great option for businesses with a budget and means everyone can start getting on board with the mobile revolution.
If you would like more information on how to update your current website, get in touch.