If you don’t have a mobile-responsive website yet, circle April 21, 2015 on your calendar.

 

That’s the date Google will make important changes to its ranking algorithm for mobile search by expanding its use of mobile-friendliness as a ranking signal. This will have a major impact on organic search.

 

How big? Impossible to say for sure yet, but Zineb Ait Bahajji of Google’s Webmaster Trends team offered a clue. She said at SMX Munich that it would have a “significant impact” on search, even more so than the Google Panda and Google Penguin updates. Read the Google announcement here.

There are many details, but here’s the skinny: Mobile-responsive sites will earn higher rankings, thus increasing your traffic. Non-responsive sites will see less mobile organic search traffic. So if your site isn’t mobile friendly by April 21st expect a steep drop in Google search results – and say goodbye to traffic from the fastest growing source on the Web.

What you need to know about the upcoming changes to Google’s ranking algorithm for mobile searches.

First, if you’re unsure about the mobile status of your site, take Google’s quick mobile-friendly test.

Then check out this page to see how Google determines whether a site is mobile friendly.

  • Google will determine mobile friendliness on a page-by-page basis. That means all pages must pass as mobile friendly.
  • Unblock CSS and JavaScript because Googlebot must be allowed to crawl CSS and JavaScript to pass as mobile-friendly.
  • Google announced plans to work on a dedicated mobile index – so stay tuned.
  • Tablets are not impacted by this update.

Not only is mobile search growing exponentially, but website responsiveness is now a necessity. Google is pushing this to ensure that websites work equally well on smartphones, tablets, laptops, and desktops. In Google’s words, “Because global web traffic from mobile devices is on the rise, and recent studies show that mobile visitors are more likely to revisit mobile-friendly sites , mobile usability is now relevant for optimal search results.”

Is your site ready? If not, now is the time to get it done. And if your business is still lacking a website, now is the perfect time to remedy that. The payoff will come with higher conversion rates and increased revenue. Contact Yabaseo with questions or help with building a site.

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