Google Announces ‘Mobile-friendly’ Sites to Rank Higher in May
Great news to website owners who have already optimized their sites for viewing on mobile devices because Google has announced it will be boosting the rankings of ‘mobile-friendly’ web pages starting May.
An ambiguous move made by the leading search engine, as it does not usually publicize algorithm modifications ahead of time, Google is setting out plans in giving higher rankings in search results for websites whose contents have been made readily available for mobile display. This particular change in Google’s search algorithm was initially introduced in April last year, which has been definitely beneficial for millions of sites with mobile-optimized pages.
Google stated that it will gradually implement the update so that no extreme drop-off will be experienced by websites which are not mobile-friendly yet. The update will only be applied to individual web pages and not the whole site. Additionally, the tech giant also said that the update is essentially an encouragement for publishers to generate their own mobile pages since non-mobile-friendly pages are expected to be outranked later on.
According to software engineer, Klemen Kloboves, this effect can be remedied as long as non-mobile-friendly sites keep high-quality content in their pages since this still continues as one of the determining factors how the algorithm assigns a rank to a specific web page. “Even if a page with high-quality content is not mobile-friendly, it could still rank well if it has great, relevant content,” Kloboves explained.
Whether it is a phone, tablet, or desktop, users should be presented with the best answers possible to their every query without experiencing any difficulty during their search. And, this is exactly the main objective of the search algorithm update – to provide and help users to easily find pages that are both ‘relevant and mobile-friendly.’
In order for a webpage to be eligible for the mobile-friendliness designation, it should meet the following criteria:
- Utilizes text or content that is readable without zooming in
- Displays content in accordance to the size of the mobile’s screen so that users no longer have to scroll or zoom to view
- Does not use software, like Flash, as it is not applicable on mobile devices
- Smartly places links on spots wherein they can be easily tapped
Google also provided tools on how website owners can check if their site is mobile-friendly and these are:
Mobile-Friendly Test: https://www.google.com/webmasters/tools/mobile-friendly/ and Webmaster Mobile Guide for web developers https://developers.google.com/webmasters/mobile-sites/
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