Google doesn’t often provide advance notice to the world when they are going to make an algorithm update, so it is important we embrace the knowledge and ensure that we are prepared. Prior to this announcement Google began sending notices via Google Webmaster Tools that alerted webmasters as to any mobile usability issues that may be present on their site, and the specific URLs where the issues were found.
Google announced in February there would be an algorithm update to improve mobile search results on April 21st, 2015:
Starting April 21, we will be expanding our use of mobile-friendliness as a ranking signal. This change will affect mobile searches in all languages worldwide and will have a significant impact in our search results. Consequently, users will find it easier to get relevant, high quality search results that are optimized for their devices.To get help with making a mobile-friendly site, check out our guide to mobile-friendly sites. If you’re a webmaster, you can get ready for this change by using the following tools to see how Googlebot views your pages:
If you want to test a few pages, you can use the Mobile-Friendly Test.
If you have a site, you can use your Webmaster Tools account to get a full list of mobile usability issues across your site using the Mobile Usability Report.
Ultimately, if you don’t take the time to heed this warning from Google, you run the risk of losing all of the organic search traffic you receive from mobile devices. If you need help quantifying what that means, the data is available if you are running Google Analytics. Check out the slideshow above to get a general overview of the mobile usability update, how to determine if you will be affected, and what you should do to prepare.
As always, you can contact us if you need any assistance!