With desktop browsing decreasing and mobile browsing taking over, Google are switching their emphasis to the mobile version of your site as its primary source for content and ranking signals.
More web browsing takes place on smartphones and tablets than on desktop computers, a shift which is set to see Google using mobile content for all search ranking data.
Desktop Versus Mobile Versus Tablet
StatCounter gathers data from 2.5 million websites across the world and reports that in November 2016, mobile took over from desktop as the most common method to browse the web.
Whilst the UK still favours the desktop overall, it will only be a matter of time before the pendulum swings in favour of the mobile on our region too.
Google, well aware of the rise of the mobile, have been talking for some time about switching their emphasis from analysing desktop versions of websites to mobile website as their primary source of ranking signals. Aptly named Mobile First, Google have been experimenting using Mobile First for some time in their search results.
What is Mobile First?
Google will use the mobile version of your website as its primary source for content and ranking signals of your website.
Your website’s mobile content will be indexed and used for Google’s search engine listings for both desktop and mobile users.
If you don’t have a mobile version of your website, Google will revert to your desktop website.
Aodhan Cullen, of Statcounter warned;
“This should be a wake up call especially for small businesses, sole traders and professionals to make sure that their websites are mobile friendly. Many older websites are not.”
What Should You Do?
The Mobile First index has not yet been rolled out. In fact Google have suggested that this will be rolled out in phases, probably throughout 2017.
If your website is responsive, meaning the content is the same across mobile and desktop, you should be fine, but if your website content is different across mobile and desktop, you should think about making changes.
If you’re unsure whether your website is ready for Google’s Mobile First index, get in touch with our SEO team for a free consultation. We’ll review your website and help you understand whether you need to consider making changes to your website.