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Mobile-friendly sites to receive Google boost

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Mobile-friendly sites to receive Google boost

Next month, search firm Google will begin to penalise websites that have not been optimised for use on handheld devices.

The upcoming change to the search engine’s algorithm, which will take place on 21st April, is predicted to cause any sites that are not mobile friendly to tumble down the rankings. Conversely, however, this would be good news for any website marketing teams that have already optimised their pages for smaller screens, as they could see their positions improve.

While many firms are putting a lot of effort into search engine optimisation (SEO), a number of them still rely on older websites that are not well suited for viewing on smartphones and tablets. However, it has been estimated that around 60% of all searches on Google are conducted via a mobile device, with the company’s own figures showing that 94% will use a handheld to find local information.

As such, many commercial site owners may soon find themselves losing traffic if they do not take precautions before Google’s April deadline. In fact, Zineb Ait Bahajji, from the search firm’s Webmaster Trends team, warned at SMX Munich that the new update could have a greater impact on SEO than Penguin or Panda, which both saw substantial changes to rankings.

Any websites that are already optimised for mobile should not see any negative effects next month. Also, sites that may struggle can take positive steps to mitigate any damage, including making sure that Google’s bots can crawl the site for indexing purposes, dealing with any page speed issues, and making certain that all redirects head to a mobile-friendly URL.

Tom Evans
Latest posts by Tom Evans (see all)
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