Is Your Website Ready For Google’s Mobile Friendly Update?

Stephen McCance April 20, 2015

As Google prepares to roll out the recently announced mobile friendly update, we give you some top tips to check whether or not your website is mobile friendly.

Tomorrow, the 21st of April 2015, has been dubbed ‘mobilegeddon’ and could potentially mean the end of the world for your website. Why? Because tomorrow is the fateful day that the all-mighty Google will begin the rollout of their mobile friendly update, meaning that if your website isn’t just that – mobile friendly – then you may be in for a tough week. As more searches than ever before are being conducted on a mobile device with the global figure rising month on month, the rollout is set to effect all searches that are carried out on a mobile device and will effect rankings for websites that are not mobile friendly accordingly.
Google has made no secret of the fact that their overall aim is to provide their users with the best possible searching experience, so it comes as no surprise to SEO professionals and experts that they have chosen to make such a momentous move. The changes will ensure that users searching on a smartphone can enjoy a mobile optimised experience, without the annoyance of having to pinch and swipe the screen to make the website fit the device.

The sites that are likely to be impacted by the changes are as follows:
Websites that ARE mobile optimised – sites that have already been indexed as being optimised for mobile, providing the user with a good experience from a smartphone, are likely to see an upturn in their rankings in mobile searches
Websites that ARE NOT mobile optimised – sites that have not been identified by Google as being optimised for mobile are likely to see their rankings on mobile devices begin to decrease, potentially even dropping off altogether.

Those SEO experts who are in the know will have, of course, seen this update coming a mile off since it was announced by Google way back in February. The prior warning from the search engine giants was somewhat surprising since they are usually notorious for keeping their cards close to their chest when it comes to algorithm changes and updates being rolled out. As there was an announcement of this particular update, the implication is that Google actually want webmasters to be able to comply, and have given them ample time to do so.

If you’re unsure if your website is mobile friendly or not, and you want to find out whether you may be effected by the changes that are coming in to play, here are some methods that will help you find out:

See if your website has been given the new ‘mobile friendly’ label. This is the best way to see whether or not you’re safe, as it not only tells you if your site is mobile friendly, it also shows that Google has already indexed it as such.

You can also useĀ Google’s mobile friendly testĀ in their Developers tools section. This, however, will only let you know whether or not your site is compatible with mobile. It unfortunately won’t tell you if it has been acknowledged as being so. If your site comes back as being optimised, but doesn’t yet have the icon, then it may just take a little more time for the site to be indexed as mobile friendly.

Another way of finding out, although slightly less reliable, is the mobile usability reporting in Webmaster Tools. The reason these are less reliable than other methods is because they can take some time to update in comparison to the other tools and, due to this, may be slightly behind and not give an accurate view.

If you are currently working with an SEO company or SEO professional on your website, they should have already ensured that your site is mobile friendly as part of their work. If not, we would recommend seeking professional advice as to what can be done for your website to ensure it is compatible with the changes. At Red Cow Media, we are offering free mobile usability tests for your website – get in touch for further details.

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