Google this week announced that it would be switching to a mobile-first search index, rewarding well optimized mobile pages with better search rankings. The move confirms the growing primacy of the mobile experience, which many experts have been discussing for some time now.
Earlier this year we talked about how mobile is beginning to take over, so this announcement is a natural development. However, there are many questions: Will Google no longer take desktop pages into account in search rankings? What role will desktop have going forward? In his announcement, Gary Illyes, a Google webmaster trends analyst, mentioned some of the impending changes, but many of these questions will need to be addressed. All we know for certain is that the change will occur in a matter of months.
How might this change your digital strategy? It shouldn’t, really. Given that mobile has been growing in importance for some time, we hope that you’ve already been considering how you can improve your mobile experience. This move, then, should just be a reminder that you should be paying more attention to mobile. For those brands who have not yet created a mobile webpage, take this as a friendly reminder.
However, that doesn’t mean that you should disregard desktop altogether. While many more visits may be coming from mobile, those who still use desktop tend to be much more engaged. And in many sectors, the majority of visits still come from desktop. Moreover, many people still prefer to make purchases, pay bills and carry out other transactions on desktop. So if you have a business based on Ecommerce, desktop is just as important as it ever has been.
Watch this space for more information about Google’s new mobile search index as more information is announced. And feel free to reach out with any questions about what this may mean for your digital strategy!