The Google Mobile Friendly Update: How To Test Your Site
The Google Mobile Friendly Update was launched on April 21st 2015. The update is designed to address the fact that more and more people are browsing and searching on the web from their mobile devices. According to Google:
“Starting April 21, we will be expanding our use of mobile-friendliness as a ranking signal. This change will affect mobile searches in all languages worldwide and will have a significant impact in our search results. Consequently, users will find it easier to get relevant, high quality search results that are optimized for their devices.”
With the launch of this Google update, now would be a good time to review your site and ensure that it is built for as many different devices as possible and that it is mobile friendly. This guide will help you check whether your site is mobile friendly and what to do if it’s not.
It’s important that you check for and address any mobile issues on your site, as those sites that are not mobile friendly may not rank as highly on mobile search results as they do on desktop results.
Check For Mobile Issues
The first step you need to take is check whether your site is mobile friendly. Google has created a tool that lets you check whether a site is mobile friendly or not:
To use the tool simply input the URL of the page that you want to check. The tool will determine whether your site is mobile friendly and raise any issues that need addressing to make a site mobile friendly.
Hopefully when you run the tool, you will see the following result:
This means that the page you have tested is mobile friendly and if you are using a CMS like Wordpress, it will generally indicate that the whole of the site is mobile friendly. You do not have to make any changes to the page to make it mobile friendly. You can of course check in Google Webmaster Tools under Mobile Usability to look for any issues site wide.
If however, your site isn’t mobile friendly then you will see a message similar to the following:
You will need to address the issues the tool has identified in order to make your site mobile friendly. This will require changes to the code on your site, of depending on which CMS you are using they may offer plugins to make your site mobile friendly if you do not have access to a developer. For example Drupal offers a Mobile Switch module to make a site mobile friendly.
Google has helpfully provided a list of resources to assist website owners in making their sites mobile friendly:
Google has also added a section in Webmaster Tools focusing on Mobile Usability to help webmaster’s identify issues with individual pages across their site.
Website owners should look to use both of these tools to identify and address mobile issues on the sites that they own. Both of these tools will help ensure that they maintain and grow traffic to their website from mobile devices.
A Website Redesign
In some cases, particularly if a website is old and you cannot easily make the existing site mobile friendly, there may be no other option but to redesign the site. If you do you require a website redesign.
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