Google Mobile-Friendly Update and its Impact on Website Rankings

Mobile First Indexing - Google

Google has been rolling out many incredible changes for the sake of websites to the way they rank. It has been launching many algorithms since 2011. A recent update on the mobile algorithm is announced in past week, October 18, 2017 – The Mobile First Indexing.

Here, you will learn all about Google’s Algorithm and its recent update. Let’s get started:

A lot of people are still not clear about the term ‘algorithm’. Let’s take a quick look at its simple definition.

Algorithm (in terms of Search Engine Rankings) is the method by which one can optimize the content for search. However, it does not mean that you can get best possible ranking by optimizing it. Google is the biggest search engine and if your site, blog and landing page are ranking good on it, you have to go nowhere to hit the success. So, you can better estimate how much important it is to optimize Google’s algorithm.

How does Google’s Algorithm Work?

When you enter your query, It does the work of extracting out webpages that contain your search (keywords you used to search), then assigns a rank to each page based on several factors such as how many times the keyword is appearing on the page, availability of original content and high-value sites. The best links that are relating to your search query are technically those links that are available further up in Google’s SERP (Search Engine Results Page). It works regularly in order to prevent duplication, provide better search results and relevant content for internet users.

Let’s have a look on some of the prominent algorithms launched by Google:

– Panda
– Pigeon
– EMD (Exact Match Domain)
– Google’s Top Heavy Algorithm
– Google mobile-friendly update
– Penguin
– Hummingbird
– Payday loan update targets
– Pirate update
– Google’s Pagerank Algorithm

Google Mobile-Friendly Update

The very first question which takes space in each head is how to get a better rank for your site? You must be thinking about hiring a digital marketing expert. That will be a fine option, but you have to understand the mechanism of the solution.

The key to your favorite query is to focus on mobile accessibility first. Make your content accessible on mobile site not for the desktop and tablet versions because mobile responsive sites have good opportunities to rank and Google itself advocating this.

We all know that mobile searches are persistently rising and it affects your interaction metrics and bounce rate, which is overall good for wider SEO impact. Google webmaster also tweeted – “The upcoming mobile friendly change is for mobile users, not tablet users”. But this cannot be used as an excuse to ignore it for other devices.

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Google’s first mobile update aka Mobilegeddon was launched in 2015, April 21. It ensures that your website pages rank at the top of the mobile search if it is mobile friendly; otherwise, it will be critically downranked and filtered out by Google’s SERP.

John Mueller from Google said recently – “It’s possible that for individual sites we were kind of already indexing the mobile version but it’s probably like a really small number, he further added,” I wouldn’t see that as saying like we’ve started with this but it’s more kind of still in the experimental stage”.

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It is been noticed by many tools or webmaster in recent weeks that Google has shifted major mobile rankings. We know that Google is planning for it and by end of this year; it will be noticed in some of the sites in order to avoid shuffling too much.

In November 2016, Google introduced the concept of mobile indexing. What is it, exactly? Take a look at it.

When it comes to search, it is well-known fact that the mobile users are more than the desktop users. Hence, Google has shifted the way it indexes content. After updating Mobilegeddon, Google has maintained the single index of apps and site pages and throw more light on mobile version on priority. The term is called – “mobile-first”.

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That was not the big deal first, but it is true that if your mobile site is lacking some content while comparing to its desktop version and it may happen that you will lack potential service users.

It is still in its experimenting stage as Google is still working on it, maybe it takes some more months to be ready. Let’s take a glance on the important highlights that are filtered out in nutshell or you can say main points of theory:

Mobile-first indexing will prioritize the rank for the sites that are ready for it. As it is earlier mentioned in above (bolded) that it will be work in some of the sites previously to avoid algorithmic change, too much penalties and content shuffling simultaneously. You have to buy some time to make your site mobile ready first.

Google is not going to inform webmasters that if any of the sites are already indexed as per mobile-first. You have to stay for a time before it has been transitioned.

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The biggest problem with current sites going mobile ready is the image lagging. Mobile searches need to be embedded in the mobile version like accompanied by alt text and have a proper description if individually opened or downloaded will not let you blank what it is about. Without doing this, you can’t optimize your site well.

It’s worth impacting that if there are variations in desktop and mobile version like less content is appearing in the mobile version, it will affect your site’s ranking for desktop searches too. It is not that you should go mobile friendly and your work is done. You have to maintain its consistency on all sizes for all devices but mobile accessibility must be the priority unless you will be lacking the visitors if you have inferior content in its mobile version then of the desktop version.

Google stated itself that don’t have a mobile site unless you have a good one. If you cannot maintain the quality and responsiveness, it’s better to don’t have any than to acquiring a bad one. Because unavailable content and lots of fussy errors will not help you, indeed spoils you badly.

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Preparing for Impact

After a ton of technical tidbits, we would like to unfold the impact. The impact of Mobilegeddon was estimated massively. But it affected a few sites, small fraction. So, make your work in an order to prepare your site compatible with all devices whether it’s desktop, tablet or mobile, consider each. You don’t have to put more efforts if your site is much same on both (mobile and desktop) versions, Google will do its work by indexing mobile version first but the site must be mobile-ready first.

Alternatively, make sure to submit its mobile version to Google Search Console and make your mobile version mirrors to its desktop version as much as possible, better image view ability and search optimization, plus valuable content including structured data to be crawled for the purposes of featured search.

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About the author: Hemendra

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