Google’s New Mobile Search Update: What Does It Mean?
Back in April 2016 Google released the ‘Mobilegeddon’ update which many feared would be the end for non-mobile friendly websites. In reality this wasn’t the case and despite sites being marked as friendly or non-friendly, the shift wasn’t as big as expected. However, it was still a glimpse into the future of how Google would view websites.
Now, earlier this month, Google has begun rolling out its new mobile update, adding to the effect of ‘Mobilegeddon’.
What does this mean for websites now and in the future?
First of all, the new update is going to increase the importance of having mobile friendly pages. If a website doesn’t have this then it can potentially fall further down the mobile search rankings, losing out to sites that Google does view as friendly. Google’s aim is always to present the user with the best and most relevant answer to the request. Part of this is the user experience of a site and with this new update, they hope to encourage more webmasters to turn to mobile friendly. Mobile is increasingly the platform of choice so it really should come as no surprise that Google is placing increased importance on this.
What about AMPs?
If Google is giving benefit to mobile friendly pages then we should also assume that accelerated mobile pages (AMPs) will also come into play more in the future. At the moment, AMPs are not a ranking factor but it seems likely that Google could change this in the future as mobile becomes more dominant. This would also fit in with the fact that Google sees speed as an important factor for websites. If AMPs do become a ranking factor for mobile search, sites that are not optimised for mobile could start to see a more noticeable drop in rankings and, through this, a drop in traffic.
It’s clear that this update is part of an ongoing emphasis on the importance of mobile optimisation. As Google themselves stated, this update won’t affect you if you are already mobile friendly. If you aren’t though, now is the time to change. With the update being real time, websites will receive the ranking benefit as and when their pages are crawled. The sooner you make these changes, the sooner your site will be ready for any future updates too.