Google’s Mobile-Friendly Search Engine Ranking Update
Is your business’ website mobile friendly? Starting April 21st, this is the question that Google will be asking… and answering for every website. Google recently announced that mobile friendliness will be a key factor in determining a websites ranking in mobile search results.
It does not matter if your business specifically caters to a mobile audience or not, your website needs to be mobile friendly to be found.
Key Factors to a Mobile Friendly Website Design
We’ve all been there, we’ve clicked (read: tapped) on a search result from our phone only to land on a page where the text is too small to read, we have to scroll side-to-side to see all the content and clicking on a menu link is an absolute gamble.
Here are the criteria Google is using to shift the odds forever in favor of the mobile searcher:
- Is the website using flash?
- Are you able to read the text without pinch-and-zooming?
- Is the website content sized appropriately so you don’t have to scroll horizontally?
- Are links designed appropriately so that the correct one can be easily tapped?
Mobile friendly websites don’t use flash
Pretty straightforward, smartphones can not run Flash. Websites that use Flash are not accessible on smartphones or tablets. If your website uses Flash, your search engine ranking is going to plummet — if it hasn’t already.
Mobile friendly websites don’t require pinch-and-zooming
Regardless of whether your website is being viewed on a smartphone or desktop computer, the experience needs to be pleasant. If your website requires someone to zoom-in in order to find and read content, that is not so pleasant, and as a result your search engine ranking is going to drop.
Mobile friendly websites don’t scroll horizontally
Vertical scrolling is a natural behavior for both mobile and desktop browsing. Having to scroll left-to-right — not so natural. If your website requires the user to scroll horizontally, expect your search engine ranking to suffer.
Mobile friendly websites don’t place links or clickable-areas too close to each other
Google recommends designing important tap targets to be at least 48 pixels tall/wide, with appropriate spacing around the links to avoid misclicking/mistapping. If your website hasn’t been designed with mobile in mind and your links aren’t appropriately sized, Google will be ranking your website much lower in search results.
The impact of mobile search for local business
Local search is absolutely dominated by mobile, 88% of local searches take place on smartphones — browse your website from your phone. How friendly are you?
A mobile friendly website:
- presents content well on a smartphone
- is easily readable and does not require pinch and zooming
- is easy to navigate with a finger
Here are some useful resources Google has created for you to test your website and learn more about the upcoming update:
At Motor City Mobility, all of our client sites have been labeled mobile-friendly. Contact us today to see how we can transform your business.
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