Yesterday Google announced that they will be introducing into their algorithm more mobile friendly results, not a huge surprise in itself as they have been pushing webmasters, developers & site owners through Google Webmaster Tools messaging to clean up our sites and evolve with the way the web is evolving (read:Google).
The message is now loud and clear and they have been kind enough to even give us a date! I say kind because in my entire history as an SEO at being awoken by search algorithm changes or algorithm updates, it has always been after the fact. Sometimes subtle hints that they may be moving towards improvements but never a date!
So what happens to a site that is not “Mobile Friendly”?
A picture paints a thousand words. During December data for Mobile Traffic started playing havoc with my senses on a client site. I searched high and low for technical reasoning and found no answer, it was not until I noticed updates coming out of Dejan SEOs Algoroo that made a little more sense, it was not just this site, it was many and it was hidden amongst the “Penguin Double Take”, “Panda Refresh” & “Penguin Tweak & Rollback”.
That image is taken directly from Google Analytics with the “Mobile Traffic” segment applied & compared to the previous year (December 1st – January 17th). In that particular example the data drop was at 61% of mobile traffic. Now consider around half of most sites traffic is mobile & tablet. Quick maths – using the above as an example we have just over a quarter of the sites sessions obliterated.
As a proactive SEO agency Artemis contacted all clients that were not mobile friendly or responsive to let them know their next course of action, we did that back in December & now the majority are close to migrating to their new mobile responsive sites or they already have, our priority has always been our clients so our switch has had to wait until last :sadface: but we too will be ready!
So what do you need to do?
Firstly Google has the tools to help
- Guide & Getting Started with Mobile Sites
- Use their Mobile Testing Tool
- Compile a Mobile Usability Report
April 21st is the official launch date where the algorithm will be updated.
So what happens to sites that do not make the switch?
In a nutshell your organic search traffic will feel the pinch along with your revenues & leads generated.