Google have recently made another search related announcement. Reacting to the fact that most searches are conducted from mobile devices, search results will be ranked according to sites’ mobile content.
Google have announced they have begun experiments to make its index mobile-first. This emphasises that mobile searchers are more important than the rest and with the recent splitting of mobile and desktop indexing it comes as no surprise that webmasters will have to make the mobile versions of their website as compliant as required.
Google has stated that it will be gradually introduced over the coming months. The ranking algorithms will ultimately look to the mobile index to determine how results should be ordered.
Google has stressed that desktop users are not going to be abandoned.
Google summarised the change in the following statement:
“Although our search index will continue to be a single index of websites and apps, our algorithms will eventually primarily use the mobile version of a site’s content to rank pages from that site, to understand structured data, and to show snippets from those pages in our results.
Of course, while our index will be built from mobile documents, we’re going to continue to build a great search experience for all users, whether they come from mobile or desktop devices. We understand this is an important shift in our indexing and it’s one we take seriously. We’ll continue to carefully experiment over the coming months on a small scale and we’ll ramp up this change when we’re confident that we have a great user experience”.
So has this current change been on the cards since the introduction of mobile geddon early last year. Only Google can answer that question.
One thing is for sure, mobile usability on all websites will be updated very quickly now it has been announced that it is a ranking factor.