When Google makes a decision, it can affect us all, and Google has just dropped a knowledge bomb on every single person who owns a website.
They have announced that from now on, if your website isn’t optimised for mobile usage — they will penalise you.
When we say penalise, we don’t mean detention either — this is the ‘being expelled and getting the cane from your angry father’ kind of penalising.
Most websites rely to some extent on traffic and exposure from the big G, so ask yourself, are you ready for the upcoming changes?
What is Google trying to tell us?
If we can learn anything from Google, it’s that they act swiftly and without mercy.
Mobile and tablet use is booming all over the world, and consumers are starting to use tablets and cell phones to do the bulk of their surfing. Chances are also good that most of your potential customers are using smartphones and tablets too…
Even if they don’t buy something right away, they will eventually. The information that you give them through their mobile use will most likely lead to purchases down the road.
For example: Have you ever tried to find a business’s opening hours on your phone in a rush to buy something after a late night at work?
The statistics say that you are using your mobile devices to go online and use the Google search a lot more than you use to — don’t you think your customers will be doing the same?
Just like if a website if slow to load, you’ll leave. If a website is a pain in the neck to use on mobile, you’ll leave and find a better website that is easier to navigate.
With the boom of popular websites around Australia such as eBay, Gumtree and Facebook, a lot of employers have taken steps to stop personal internet use at work, which leaves your target market with only one option…
…using their smartphone or tablet to find a solution to their needs.
At the end of 2013, there were approximately 1.4 billion smartphones in use worldwide, and the Sydney Morning Herald published an article last year featuring research that showed over 66% of Australians own a smartphone.
66% of Australians own a smartphone, which they regularly use to go online and look for products, services and information. That isn’t even counting the tablet users…
Can you really let that much business go to your competitors?
Google is trying to tell us that there is a major trend away from desktops.
They’re giving us a warning.
Why is Google doing this?
Google has realised that with so many people now using their devices online, that if they send people to a website that isn’t optimised for their device, that the user is not going to have a good experience.
The very first of Google’s beliefs is: “Focus on the user and all else will follow“.
This means that they are 100% focused on giving the end user the absolute best experience they can possibly have.
Visiting a website not optimised for mobile is painful. It’s like trying to steer a car with your feet — doable, but awkward, and far from ideal.
When a website can be viewed on different types of devices, it’s called a “responsive” website. This is what Google wants to see, and if you have a responsive site, they will reward you accordingly.
There are several other things that they want to see as well. They are more technical aspects that our team here at Bambrick Media work on such as:
- Enabling videos to be played on all devices (no Flash)
- No 404 pages on your website
- Proper treatment of the Mobile Googlebot
- Correct redirects
What can you do to save yourself?
It isn’t hard to see why they have brought about this new algorithm — it makes sense.
If you’ve ever tried to use an unresponsive website on your phone — you’ll know the feeling, just like if you’ve ever been hit by a Google algorithm.
Your traffic plummets, your site disappears from the rankings and it feels like you are lost in space.
We have helped business owners not just recover from punishments from Google, but to get back into the meaty part of the rankings and help businesses to start raking in customers.
Photo Credit (Flickr)
If you aren’t sure if your website is optimised for mobile devices correctly, get in touch with us here. As an established SEO company, Bambrick Media’s strategists have a comprehensive understanding of Google-friendly digital marketing techniques and look forward to helping you achieve your digital marketing goals.