It finally happened.
After much speculation, Google is rolling out an algorithm update that will flatten the rankings of sites that aren’t responsive on mobile devices. Google appreciates it’s users and that shows in their decision to give less precedence to websites that haven’t made their site friendly for mobile.
Fun Fact: 80% of Americans keep a mobile device within arms reach at all times, a statistic that has fundamentally changed how we search the Internet. Gone are the days of stunted search terms, sparingly typed into a browser window. Now people are using voice capabilities on their cell phones, taking search queries from one or two words to full, grammatically correct sentences and questions. Prioritizing sites that cater mobile device and cell phone users is a logical next step.
Despite how frustrating Google algorithm updates can be for businesses and web masters, they do mean that every day consumers are getting consistently refined, and thus qualified, answers to their queries. Not having a responsive or mobile friendly website tell Google that you don’t care about user experience, and thus, don’t deserve prime ranking positions.
One plus side for those that may be feeling some panic at this news, is that Google reported ‘no change’ on searches from non-mobile devices. So if you currently rank well on a desktop computer, you should continue to do so.
Not sure if your website is mobile friendly or not? Check out Webmaster tools, where Google has created a system to let you know if you’re compliant or not.
Sites are either friendly or not. There is no middle-ground, so be sure to take the time to plug in your url if you aren’t sure. Adapting to a changing market can be the difference between thriving and having to close up shop, so if you get revenue, brand recognition or leads from your website, making it responsive is should be high on your priority list.