Google’s release of Mobilegeddon, the latest and major update to its search algorithm, has been gradual, and the message is that the transition has been successful, but challenges for some businesses may still remain.
Google’s release of Mobilegeddon represented a move by the search engine giant to penalise those websites failing to offer mobile users a positive user experience by way of a mobile site or responsive design.
Before the rollout, more than a handful of SEO experts were predicting significant implications of the release for small and medium-sized enterprises. It was suggested that the implications could be greater than they were for the Panda or Penguin releases. Figures published by ClickThrough Marketing reveal that up to 40 per cent of websites were not meeting Google’s set-down criteria for optimal user experience through a smartphone or tablet device. The impact of either the Panda or Penguin updates was nowhere in the region of 40 per cent.
Gary Illyes, a webmaster trends analyst for Google, took to Twitter on 1st May to confirm that Mobilegeddon had been rolled out fully since its launch on 21st April and that the impact was, in fact, negligible. Illyes noted that a lot of sites had become mobile-friendly pre the release, so the actual number of sites that would otherwise have been affected had declined significantly. He noted, however, that fluctuations in rankings may still occur due to the fact that many pages that have only recently become mobile-friendly do not, as yet, have the label “mobile-friendly.” Google has to index this change before pages can be deemed mobile-friendly.
Adaptation is critical to business success, so website marketers have to absorb the implications of Mobilegeddon and integrate the necessary changes into their online presence. Having a website that is not mobile-friendly is a definite no-no, given the emergence of mobile consumers as a large and growing target market. Your website may not be mobile-friendly from the perspective of the Mobilegeddon release if you have seen a notable drop in either organic search visits, first-time visitors or leads from search. Doing things such as web copywriting well is important, but if people cannot find your website, you have failed the most basic test of online marketing.