Late last year, there was an announcement made by Google regarding their mobile-first index initiative. This will become their primary index moving forward. This update is the latest in a push from Google to encourage webmasters to prioritize mobile sites over desktop sites.
The majority of searches occur via mobile devices (60% according to Hitwise and Google) and Google wants to accommodate that, even if the search is done on a desktop computer. So Google will create and rank its search listings based on the mobile version of content, even for listings that are shown to desktop users.
What this means for you:
While the change won’t happen all at once, steps need to be taken in the meantime. If you do not have a mobile version of your website, Google will continue to index your site just as they did before. The priority should be ensuring that your mobile site has close to the same amount of content as the desktop site.
Google is famous for its carrot / stick approach. First you are encouraged to take the recommended action, and then you are punished if you don’t. When the switch to mobile index happens, the desktop content that is not on the mobile site will not show in the Search Engine Results Pages (SERPs).
While Google hasn’t released a full release date for this change, it is expected to occur in 2018 and will roll out on a “site-by-site basis.”
Do you need:
TSG has created a Mobile First Index Guide just for you. For this and to stay on top of other digital marketing innovations and opportunities, Contact us today!