Did you know that Google ranks sites differently for mobile searches? If your site doesn’t adapt to small screens properly, Google will consider it broken and dump the searcher on your home page, and not necessarily the page they wanted. As it considers your site ‘broken’ it will cease to appear for people searching on touch devices. Not good.
Google will send you an email or a message through Webmaster Tools, along the lines of – “fix mobile usability issues found on…”. You can test your site with this tool – https://www.google.com/webmasters/tools/mobile-friendly/.
Just hope it doesn’t give you this result –
Google have been rolling out an algorithm update since November 2014 that will factor in your mobile delivery. The bottom line is your SEO will take a big hit if your site isn’t setup for mobiles.
Google are looking for things like readable text sizes, links far apart enough to touch, no Flash, no horizontal scrolling. Just common sense stuff really. Learn more about Google’s mobile criteria here.
The days of separate mobile sites were short lived and now thankfully over. We spoke a lot last year about responsive web design. It is a design technique that enables your site to adapt to any screen size. Every new site we built last year used this technique and every one this year will too.
Existing sites can be adapted, for example http://www.gtlaw.com.au and http://www.retireaustralia.com.au, but if you can, design your site from scratch starting with the mobile view. The result will be a well planned site for all modern platforms.
So, before you spend another cent on SEO, make sure your site gets the green light from the Google Mobile-Friendly Test.Posted by Chris Garrett on 29 January 2015