Is Your Website Really Ready for the Mobile Revolution?

A few weeks ago, search engine giant Google put out an announcement that made it very clear that the mobile revolution had well and truly begun. Of course, smartphones and mobile tablets have revolutionised our lives in many ways over the past few years providing us with more freedom, flexibility and total convenience when it comes to getting online. However, with mobile device use having soared and with expectations that it will continue to rocket over the coming years it was only a matter of time before Google took things a step further.

Google’s recent announcement struck fear into the hearts of website owners and businesses without mobile friendly sites. Google’s technical apparatchiks announced that websites that were not adapted for mobile devices would get penalised by being pushed down the rankings while those that were adapted for mobile devices would be rewarded by being bumped up the rankings, thus being exposed to a far higher level of traffic. While many business and website owners may have previously been on the fence with regards to whether to adapt their site for mobile devices, this announcement could be the one thing that pushes them into making a decision.

Not all sites are mobile-friendly

Of course, in addition to the many website owners that do not have mobile adapted sites there are also a huge number that do…or at least they think they do. While some websites will be properly adapted for mobile devices and will therefore benefit from increased rankings the strict guidelines in place from Google means that there are some sites that will fail the mobile-friendly test. Recent tests that were carried out on a number of websites that were meant to be mobile-friendly showed that a large number were actually not truly mobile friendly, which could result in being penalised by Google.

Businesses and website owners that want to ensure they do not get penalised should take some time to make sure that their websites are truly adapted for mobile devices even if this means going to a professional in order to get the site checked and improved. It is important to bear in mind the various factors that Google will be considering when checking sites to ensure that they are properly adapted for mobiles. This includes:

  • Checking that the content on your site isn’t wider than the screen size
  • Ensuring that readers do not have to scroll horizontally or zoom by making sure that the content of the site fits mobile screen
  • Keeping a good distance between links on web pages
  • Making sure that the text on the site is an appropriate size so that readers will not have to zoom in order to read the pages
  • Making sure that software such as Flash is not used on mobile sites

Make sure that you consider the above factors when either developing your mobile site or checking whether your existing one is mobile-friendly.