On April 21, Google released a new algorithm update. While this has been covered extensively in the media, it is not news to me many; hints were released by Google months ago. An algorithm contain the rules Google’s computers use to determine which results show up and in what order when someone searches for a term on a search engine like Google. This specific update has been dubbed by the media “mobilegeddon” as it is a major update (Google rolls out smaller updates all the time) that affects many sites if they are not mobile-friendly. Why is this significant and why is Google doing this?
This algorithm update can affect a website’s ranking. That is, if a website is not easy to use on a mobile device (a smartphone or even a tablet), Google may demote this site in its order of search rankings. People visit Google.com because it is useful. One can search for nearly anything and (usually) find it quite easily. Why is Google useful to individuals? Because Google computer engineers work hard to develop algorithms that elect to display useful results relevant to an individual. Thus, Google rewards relevant sites by placing them higher up in the search results than less relevant sites. Google considers now, more than ever, sites that are mobile-friendly to be relevant. This is nothing new. In 2012, a Google survey found that 74% of internet users on a mobile phone surveyed were more likely to visit a site again if it was mobile-friendly. More and more people are surfing the web on mobile devices. If Google listed sites in search results that were hard to navigate on a mobile device, then those people using Google.com on a mobile device would not want to use it and would resort to finding mobile-friendly sites by other means. Without search traffic, there would be no ad revenue! Ad revenue made up 90% of Google’s $66 billion 2014 revenue, with the majority of this revenue coming from Google’s own websites as opposed to ads on member ad network’s sites.
The algorithm update is not just good for Google’s business but is also good for your business if you have a website. If your website is mobile friendly, then people using mobile phones are more likely to remain on it, interact with it, learn about your business and contact your business than if your website is not mobile friendly. Also, if your website is mobile-friendly, it may rank higher (or at the very least, it might not rank lower than before) in Google search results. The exact impact of this algorithm change is yet to be fully understood, but its intent is crystal clear.
At Search Light Internet Marketing, we enjoy keeping up with the latest developments in online search and marketing. We apply this knowledge to all of our clients’ websites and campaigns. Search Light offers Search Engine Optimization (SEO) campaign management (to get your businesses’ website ranked on search engines), website design services and more. To learn about our company and to find out what we can do for you visit www.SearchLightIM.com.