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Is Your Site Ready for Googles Mobile First Indexing?

Amber KesslerWeb DesignLeave a Comment

For a couple years now the amount of mobile searches have vastly outnumbered the amount of desktop searches being made.  Knowing this would continue to be the trend, Google announced in 2016 that it was experimenting with “mobile first indexing”.

This past December they gave a brief update on this experiment and where it’s headed. Below is a snippet of the latest announcement from Google:

“Currently our crawling, indexing, and ranking systems typically look at the desktop version of a page’s content, which may cause issues for mobile searchers when that version is vastly different from the mobile version.
Mobile-first indexing means that we’ll use the mobile version of the content for indexing and ranking, to better help our – primarily mobile – users find what they’re looking for. Webmasters will see significantly increased crawling by Smartphone Googlebot, and the snippets in the results, as well as the content on the Google cache pages, will be from the mobile version of the pages.

The announcement went on to say that they plan to take this roll out very slowly to allow webmaster to adjust and adapt to this change, so for now, the desktop version is still being indexed.

What is Mobile First Indexing?

Google uses bots to crawl the web and indexes the information it finds on websites into a database.  When a person uses a Google search, it then looks at it’s database and delivers you the most relevant results.  Right now those bots crawl the web via desktop views and mobile views, since how a website appears on a mobile phone can be drastically different than how it appears on a computer screen.

How does this change affect your business?

If your site was built within the last couple years this change may not affect you. Making mobile-friendly, or ‘responsive’ websites has been a web design best practice for awhile now.  (Not sure if your site is mobile-friendly? Use this Google tool here to check.)

It’s important to note that sites that are responsive will be given a higher “score” in the Google search results.  So this change will affect your customers that are trying to find you.  If people are searching for a local furniture store or ice cream shop, your old, non-responsive website could mean that you get overlooked by showing up lower in the google search results.

Is your website in need of updating so that you can avoid missing out on customers?  Use our contact page to reach out for a free audit and consultation.

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