The so-called “mobilegeddon,” Google’s search algorithm update boosting the performance of mobile-friendly sites, went into effect back in April. But many sites are still lagging behind when it comes to making their sites easily accessible on mobile devices. As more and more users browse the net on smart phones and tablets, failing to create a mobile-friendly site will only harm the success and web visibility of companies that aren’t keeping up with the times.
What is Mobile-Friendliness?
Mobile-friendly sites are those that perform well on smart phones and tablets. Mobile web design must take into account a number of factors that don’t apply to standard desktop browsing, including:
- Compatibility with a number of browsers and operating systems.
- Appearance across multiple screen sizes.
- Ease of access on small display, including image and text size and touchscreen-friendly navigation.
Sites with responsive designs that change to fit the size and shape of the device displaying them are the leaders in mobile friendliness. Other sites offer alternative versions for mobile and desktop users. This tactic can work, but it is swiftly becoming outdated.
How Mobile Compatibility Affects You
The simple answer is that if your site is not mobile-friendly, you are missing out on traffic. And, depending on your niche and target audience, you could be missing a lot of traffic.
After Google’s update, sites that rank well in desktop searches are often buried by inferior competitors in mobile searches simply because they are not optimized for mobile devices. And with more people using mobile devices than desktop computers to access the Internet, that change has devastating implications.
Mobile compatibility is especially vital if your site’s audience is more likely to utilize a mobile device. For example, young people use their smart phones to surf the Web more frequently than older users; if you’re marketing a trendy product to a young user base, mobile friendliness is essential. Similarly, if you offer a service that people might need on the go – like auto towing or locksmithing – you absolutely need to be visible on mobile searches.
It’s clear that the shift toward mobile devices isn’t a temporary trend. In the future, Internet access from mobile devices will only continue to grow – and keeping up with the times will become increasingly vital for your website. If you have not yet modified your site to work well on smart phones and tablets, you are limiting your audience and, ultimately, the success of your page.