Google the #1 search engine on the planet is about to change their search engine algorithm again. How will this impact business owners? Great question reader, beginning April the 21st, if your website isn’t optimized for mobile devices it’s going to be harder to rank on Google’s mobile search listings. Recent statistics show that anywhere from a third to half of the traffic coming to your website is using mobile devices. Losing that share of traffic can potentially impact your bottom line in a big way. The new trend is for websites to provide the user with a mobile friendly experience.
Smartphone and tablet sales
Smartphone and tablet sales are quickly replacing the traditional desktop PC. Many smartphones are just as fast if not faster than desktops from just a year ago. The global smartphone market is exploding as I write this article. Global smartphone sales to end users in 2014 topped 967,780,000, almost a Billion sales and rising. Revenue from sales of smartphones was $264.75 Billion in 2014.
Global smartphone market vendor share for Q2 in 2014 had the electronic behemoth Samsung in the lead with 25.20% followed by Apple with 11.90%. Huawei and Lenovo finished in third and fourth place with the remaining 50.6% dominated by other manufacturers. – Source Strategy Analytics July 2014
Samsung took the lead in bridging the gap between personal notebook computers and smartphones by introducing 5” screens and larger. Apple followed suit by introducing the latest iPhone Plus available with a 5.5” display. Larger screen sizes will impact the tablet market, smartphones are just more portable. People search using their mobile devices more now than ever before. Let’s face it not everyone has a personal computer but almost everyone has a smartphone, people may leave home without their car keys but they never forget their phone.
Google mobile algorithm
This new algorithm will affect websites not only in the U.S. but internationally as well. Google, a company always at the forefront of technology, responded to the growing number of consumers who do searches on mobile devices by building an algorithm that specifically caters to the needs of mobile visitors and ranks mobile-friendly websites at the top of its mobile search
Smartphone’s and Apps
Companies are increasingly turning to App developers to develop Apps for their companies that can be downloaded instantaneously. Company Apps are a great way to increase company profits. The benefits include the following:
- Social sharing
- One click calling
- Map location of business
- Mobile ecommerce, pay for services using the app
- Mobile marketing sign up lists
Small business owner online visibility
According to StatCounter mobile internet usage in the U.S. has increased by 73% to reach 24.4% last August. This statistic could be good news for business owners who already have mobile optimized sites. Most small and medium sized businesses rely on local search engines finding (Name, Address, Phone number). But with the new algorithm coming into play April 2015 websites will have to be optimized specifically for mobile searches. Not upgrading to a mobile website will end up costing businesses revenue if they don’t change. Don’t become extinct like the dinosaurs, adapt now before it’s too late. Previous companies without a mobile website that are currently #1 may end up falling in Google’s rankings. Everyone will just have to wait until the launch on April the 21st to see how mobile rankings will impact the market. Company A that has a SEO mobile website will be more searchable compared to company B that doesn’t have a mobile website, even if they are selling the same product or service.
Am I mobile ready?
Don’t panic just yet, there is a test that can determine if your mobile ready. Check out Google’s Mobile Friendly Test just enter your companies URL in the search bar. You will be notified immediately if your website is mobile friendly.
Non mobile friendly websites:
- text content is wider than the screen
- text is too small
- links are too close together
- mobile viewport not optimized
BTW: The new Google algorithm changes will only apply to mobile search results performed on mobile devices, it will not affect searches traditionally done on PC’s and notebook computers. Make sure your website is SEO mobile friendly so your customers can find you online.