On April 21st Google brought into play potentially sweeping changes that could affect your business, and search engine optimization in particular. The most notable change is the plan to favourably rank sites that are mobile responsive.
This is huge folks.
We have seen over the last couple year’s steady growth in the use of mobile devices such as smart phones and tablets. According to Business Insider, currently about 60% of all web searches are performed from a mobile device. While it depends on the industry and user, I have seen other estimates of this figure at 50%. Suffice it to say, we have now reached a time when more then half of all search happens from mobile devices. And we can expect that to continue to grow. We’re now solidly in the age of the mobile internet. Users want real time, real results, time and location specific. And they want it immediately. So in response, since Google essentially owns search, and has a vested interest in users having a seamless experience, they will now make their search algorithms favour sites that are mobile viewing friendly. That means sites that detect what type of device is visiting and configure displayed material for the viewing screen size, will rank higher in search. If your site is not responsive, you may see your search ranking suffer. Not sure if your site is mobile friendly? Check here at see with this free Google tool.
This is pretty significant if you want to maintain your rankings.
But having a favourable mobile display is just the beginning of the coming sweeping changes…
Google has always been about relevancy. Content has always proven king. But that is also changing. While content is extremely important, user experience is just as important. That seems to be the message with the shift to favouring mobile friendly.
And now Google is upping the ante yet again – beyond just quality content.Google search in the future will favour those that have demonstrated that they have an audience. Yes, having an audience that is talking about your content will matter.
It now seems you will need to go beyond quality, and demonstrate a relevance with your particular target audience.
In the end, these changes are good for search, and they will be good for business, at least the legitimate ones, who now will truly earn the ranking they deserve. What’s the real message in all this? Produce quality content that is relevant to your target audience, content that gets talked about, and delivered in a mobile friendly manner.
Really, there’s no trickery about it. That just sounds like good marketing!