Mobile-First Index: Recently, mobile devices have become a more popular means of accessing the internet than desktop computers. It is more convenient given that you can browse the web through the palms of your hands. Because of this, Google has been geared to making each user’s mobile internet experience easier. They developed the Google Mobile-first Index.
Today, it’s ideal to make your website as mobile-friendly as possible especially when this update factors it in the rankings of search engine results. In this article, we will look at Google’s mobile-first index on a deeper level.
There are areas in your site that your web developers need to give regards. Here’s a list of different points to consider in incorporating the mobile-first index:
Make sure that the desktop version of your website is completely reflected, especially on the mobile version. The mobile-first index will look to the mobile version in placing it on search engine results. All of the content should be present in both versions.
While content is important to mobile, you should also optimize the version to be convenient and easy to use for the audience. This can be done by having content hidden by tabs that could be accessed after a single click, or placing “continue reading” in an article that could be too long.
Pro tip: Listening to your favorite internet marketing podcast to be updated with the latest trends and any Google algorithm updates can greatly to prepare and check your website ahead of time.
What to do:
Check Your Mobile Friendliness
The first thing you should do is to look at your ranking for mobile devices. There are various tools available for knowing your site’s ranking. While knowing your ranking and other information, you should consider everything for the improvement of your rankings.
Look at the data for your content, visual elements, compatibility of all widgets, contents, and others for your site. Everything should be regarded in mobile optimization for better mobile viewing of your users.
A mobile-friendly site will make a website more accessible to everyone. Focusing on a mobile-friendly site will be relatively more cost-effective than a desktop one. Also, this kind of sites will increase your business’ sales.
A higher number of customers are using their mobile devices for online purchases from 2013 until now. It is a must to incorporate a mobile-friendly structure in your site.
Google has been developing this since 2017, and still assesses each site’s readiness for mobile-first indexing. It can only help boost your site to gain more traffic if your website is mobile ready. There are 1.2 billion mobile web users scattered all around the world right now, and this is most likely to increase over the next few years. Focus on where your customers are, on the mobile web, and capitalize that opportunity for your website.
Here are some tips to consider to know if you are optimized for mobile:
Make sure that your call to action buttons on the site is easily visible by the audience. This adds to their user browsing convenience.
Create a simple menu. You do not need a complicated one since mobile users hate clicking on things and also, it might give users who have low-end mobile devices a hard time.
Make an easy way to go back to your home page. Most users get lost when they scroll to some sites; it is important to craft an easy way out for your users. Most websites place their logo on the top of the site and clicking it will send you to the home page.
Do not let ads steal your spotlight. Strategize on where you will put your ads without your web architecture suffering.
Put filters on search results. It will make users’ lives easier when they are trying to find a specific product.
Does Your Structured Data Work on Mobile too?
Structured data can also do wonders for mobile. It aids Google to sort out your content and supplies more information to searches, just like for its desktop version.
Google Search Console is a tool that makes mobile users can properly see sure rich snippets. You can access all the data you need under Search Appearance > Structured Data. Additionally, ensure that your structured data is crawlable without errors. If you encounter any problem, the Search Console will also be able to help you address them.
Speed is a Priority
If your user needs an answer to a question, they would want it in the quickest way possible, especially if the issue needs an answer urgently. For instance, a person needs data on where your store is. If your site is very slow, they might find another store for their needs.
Website loading speed greatly impacts the traffic on your site. The slower your loading speed is, the higher the bounce rate, and the lower the chances of returning traffic. Aside from that, it is also a factor of Google’s ranking algorithm. Since Google is now more focused on mobile devices, its weighting factor might even increase now that mobile-first indexing is involved.
To assess your site, you can use Google’s Test My Site Tool. The tool’s results are based on a 3G network which is the most common network for mobile browsing all throughout the globe until 2020. It tests for hundreds of different factors such as:
Mobile Usability: configuring viewport, sizing objects, and text readability
Comparison to industry benchmarks
When the assessment is done, Google will list factors you have to improve on according to their impact. It will also come with how you can address those concerns and any other factors that affect the user experience. Additionally, it will also report how you rank against the big brands in your league and the customers you leave on the table.
AMP Your Website
In starting up a site, you must have at least two versions of any article page: the original page which is what the user will usually see, and its AMP version.
You may also have to alter your site template so it can fit some restrictions such as having all CSS in AMP in-line and less than 50KB. Custom fonts are usually loading-intensive, so a special amp-font extension is needed to control that loading.
Browsing on mobile devices is extremely popular, so it is best that you maximize it for your brand’s best interest. Complying with the mobile-first index gives priority to your brand in the search index which can attract a lot of traffic to your site.
Mobile-First Index: Practical Ways to Fully Optimize Your Website 2019