Why You Have to Make a Mobile-Friendly Website?
Aware that the number of consumers using mobile devices has risen steadily over the past few years—and that the number will continue to rise as people increasingly rely on mobile devices for everything from working to banking to ordering pizza—Google changed its search algorithm in April, 2015, to incorporate mobile access as a factor in its search rankings around the world and in all languages.
While some website owners were caught by surprise, most website developers were not. Business owners unaware of this change and whose websites were not mobile-friendly saw a drop in their Google search rankings, whereas mobile-prepared businesses either experienced no change or jumped higher in their rankings. (Google’s “mobile friendly” tag doesn’t affect search results on desktops and laptops.)
In our on-the-go society, people want what they want wherever and whenever they want it, and mobile-readiness means search results have to be fast, relevant, and high quality. Non-mobile-optimized websites consistently rank lower on mobile device searches.
What Can You Do to Ensure Your Website Is Mobile Friendly?
- Make sure your entire website is mobile-optimized. Search ranking applies at the page, not just the site, level. So first ensure your website has a responsive design—meaning it automatically provides optimal viewing on a desktop, laptop, tablet, or smart phone, regardless of screen size, shape, or orientation. Then ensure each page is designed for optimal viewing on all devices. Websites already designed solely for mobile use are set to go. And businesses with two versions of their website using the same URL—one designed for mobile device use and another for desktop/laptop viewing—will see the same Google rankings on both with proper coding.
- Ensure your site is “crawlable”. Google robots, or crawlers, need to be able to access all content on your website without encountering an error, or ranking results will suffer. Many sites now contain Flash content from other sites or YouTube videos. While these add interesting content, they could negatively affect crawlability on mobile devices without proper coding.
- Run a mobile-friendly test. Google provides an online tool that tests websites for mobile-friendly design. By entering your site’s URL at the Google test site, you can almost instantly determine whether it passes the mobile-friendly test. If it does, great. If it doesn’t, then something is blocking the crawlers, and you will need to find and fix the problem before re-running the test.
Google provides users an optimum search experience, and you should do the same for your website visitors so they can find and view your site using any device.