Google Algorithm Update to Assess Mobile-Friendliness

Google recently made a rare announcement regarding their upcoming algorithm change. Beginning April 21st, Google will take the mobile-friendliness of a website into consideration for mobile search results. Google is saying that this change will have a substantial impact.

Back in November, Google shared their criteria for a mobile-friendly site. Around this time, they started adding a “mobile-friendly” label to their search results, which can be seen below.

Mobile-Friendly Cropped

Google has previously shared their criteria for a mobile-friendly site, but it has yet to be used for rankings. A few “no-brainers” as far as criteria go are:

  • Readable texts without zooming
  • Placing links far enough apart for easy selection by users
  • Content fit-to-screen so users don’t have to scroll or zoom

If a website meets the requirements above, then it will likely be considered mobile-friendly. To check if yours does, check out Google’s Mobile-Friendly Test tool for a definitive yes or no.

Mobile-Friendly Test

Unfortunately, having a mobile-friendly site might not be enough to ensure good rankings. Google is going to take site speed into consideration as well. One of our previous blog posts, Is Site Speed Important? discusses just how critical a website’s speed is and shares tips on how to improve it. To check yours, Google’s PageSpeed Insights tool will show your website’s speed on a 100-point scale and if needed, provide you with ways of improving your score.

It is very unlike Google to share details of an upcoming algorithm change, which shows just how important having a good mobile-friendly site will be starting April 21st. Be sure to take advantage of the advance notice! Start by determining if you have a mobile-friendly site, if your site meets Google’s criteria, and check its PageSpeed too. If you did not pass the mobile-friendly test or have a slow mobile speed, now is the time to do something about it because the algorithm update will be here before you know it!

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Lexie Kimball

Lexie is an Account Manager at Netvantage Marketing, an online marketing company that specializes in SEO, PPC and social media. At Netvantage, Lexie assists with online marketing campaigns and social media outreach.

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