Mobile-Friendly Web Design

Remember “Mobilegeddon,” Google’s huge mobile-friendliness update from last year?

If you’re someone who regularly follows search engine news and algorithm updates, your response will be inevitably some variation on “of course.” But for many business owners and webmasters, it may be a lot closer to “who cares?”

For all the fuss that was made, a surprising number of sites experienced almost no perceptible change since the update was introduced in April 2015.

But according to Google, that may soon change. A recent update to the company’s Webmaster Central blog indicates that the effects of that algorithm update will start to be amplified beginning in May of this year.

Exactly what that will mean for search marketers and website owners is unclear. Google merely states it will be “increasing the effect of the ranking signal” that is mobile-friendliness – so, not necessarily changing the function of the algorithm, but most likely weighing mobile-friendliness more heavily.

If that doesn’t seem like a satisfying answer, that’s probably because it’s not. Even Google seems willing to acknowledge that the mobile update wasn’t everything it was made out to be, pointing out that a “page with high quality content” that may not be mobile-friendly can still rank highly if it is matched well enough to user intent.

So what’s a webmaster to do?

How To Make Your Site Mobile-Friendly

If your website wasn’t one of the hundreds of thousands that were frantically updated to a responsive or adaptive design, it’s still probably a good idea to err on the side of “late” vs. “never.”

Responsive vs. Mobile Web Design

The unbelievable growth of mobile means this is becoming a better and better idea with each passing day, and it’s likely that you’ll see improved conversions and better site engagement as well. (There’s an argument to be made that Google may have initially exaggerated the impact of their update because they knew webmasters would listen – and a more mobile, user-friendly web is very much an ideal outcome for Google. And for you!)

If you’re curious about how your site stacks up, whether or not you’ve officially incorporated a mobile-friendly design, you can head over to Google’s Mobile Friendly Test tool, or learn more about mobile-friendly web design directly from Google.

About Brendan Silk

Brendan Silk is the lead content strategist at Ethoseo and a regular contributor to the Ethoseo blog. In addition to blogging and copywriting, he's spent the past three years honing his SEO and inbound marketing skills, with an emphasis on link building and social media. In his spare time he can usually be found chasing cats, playing drums, or listening to Phish.You can find more posts by Brendan at his bio page on Ethoseo, or follow him on Google+.

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