Google has been on a mission since day one – to deliver the best solutions to their users. And that is why they regularly change the algorithm. This is to push webmasters to execute better websites, enhanced customer experience, intelligent and engaging content. Keep an eye on the changing algorithms. If your website is impacted, then you know what you have to do!
Coming to the point. September 2020 saw the latest change rolled out by Google – the mobile first indexing. The question that you need to ask yourself is, how does it impact your ranking? Should you panic? Should you act on it?
It is a fact that Google has been extremely vocal about mobile first indexing. If you have not thought about it yet, may this article help you understand why you should read the whole piece and get started on it.
According to Google Developers, mobile first indexing Google means:
“Google predominantly uses the mobile version of the content for indexing and ranking. … Since the majority of users now access Google Search with a mobile device, Googlebot primarily crawls and indexes pages with the smartphone agent going forward.”
First things first: 5 things you need to know about mobile first indexing Google
- Google will use your site’s mobile version
- This time-consuming move will eventually apply to you and everyone else
- Make sure that the site’s experience is similar on the mobile as it is on the desktop
- Remember that mobile utility will not be the same as the mobile first indexing
- Understand the best-practices and keep an eye on the latest updates
Google will use your site’s mobile version
The search engine does not have a separate mobile first index. Google has to use the URL of the mobile-friendly version of your website to rank you. If your website has a separate desktop URL and a mobile URL, Google will segregate accordingly to show the right URL to the right platform. However, in both cases, the content that will be indexed is the mobile version.
This time-consuming move will eventually apply to you and everyone else.
If your website has not yet been moved to the mobile first indexing, it will be. There is no timeline to foresee or timeframe to expect. There is no way to find out. It is upto Google to estimate how ready the website will be for mobile first indexing. The testing will be based on links, text, video, and images. The structuring of the data and other metadata is also analyzed. Any website launched after the 1st of July will have its mobile first indexing enabled.
Make sure that the site’s experience is similar on the mobile as it is on the desktop.
If you have taken a look at the best practices that are loved by Google, you would know that it is vital to provide a similar customer experience on both the desktop and mobile. For instance, if the mobile website’s content is lesser, Google would not be able to derive as much data from the page as when the desktop version was utilized. This could cause the rankings to drop.
One solution is to ensure that both sites have data structured in the same way, and they have the same headings and meta tags on both sites. Mobile first indexing SEO should be adopted. Use a mobile first indexing checker.
Remember that mobile utility will not be the same as the mobile first indexing.
Your first step is to understand the difference between the mobile first indexing and mobile usability. It means that a page can be enabled for mobile first indexing irrespective of whether it is optimized for a mobile device or not. Google’s mobile usability test is not an indicator of whether your site is ready for mobile first indexing or not.
Understand the best-practices and keep an eye on the latest updates
This should have probably been the first point. Understand Google’s recommendations, along with best practices. Optimize your website for mobile first indexing by following the rules carefully. Get your mobile first indexing checker in place. Find out more about mobile first indexing SEO.
Major changes in the algorithm can be scary. However, if you are handling your SEO right, you will be fine. Create high-quality content focussing on not just the search engine but your target audience as well. Earn links from various credible as well as niche-specific sites. If you are looking to optimize your website or mobile first indexing (which you should), connect with us now.