What Mobile-First Indexing Means for Your Website
As search engines aim to serve relevant content to their users above all else, the demands being placed on websites are realistic – but sometimes difficult. One such recent change relates to how pages are indexed; mobile-first indexing is now the default indexing solution for Google.
Just what is mobile-first indexing and what does it mean for your site? Below, we’ll look at the answers to these questions.
What Is Mobile-First Indexing?
First, let’s cover the basics of mobile-first indexing for those who are unfamiliar. Historically, when Google would analyze your website and decide what to display in search results, it would examine your desktop website version for information. This, for the majority of Google’s existence, was the only form of website a brand would have.
Today, however, Google is focusing on analyzing and indexing content from the mobile version of your website. A couple of years ago, Google announced that they would be pinging servers in search of mobile indicators from websites, and penalizing those that did not provide mobile-friendly experiences.
This is just another step in the same direction Google has been moving: with more people using mobile devices than desktop computers for search, prioritizing content based on mobile experience makes sense.
A Lack of Mobile-Friendly Content Will Hurt You
Because of Google’s shift to a mobile-friendly experience, your website may find itself incapable of competing if you do not offer a mobile version of your website. While penalties for not providing a responsive mobile experience have been around for some time, this mobile-first indexing can leave your website without any description in the results/rankings where it does appear.
Thankfully, you can evaluate the situation and see if you need to make any changes. One such tool that can be helpful is Google’s mobile friendliness test; it will show whether or not your website is up to par and help you determine what (if any) changes need to be made.
A Need for More Concise Content
Mobile-first indexing is being used by Google for a reason: mobile browsing is different than desktop browsing. With smaller screens, lower resolutions and less time to spend analyzing content, most people want quick and easy answers.
As such, a shift to a mobile-dominant experience means you’ll want to make your content more concise. Whether it is metadata, descriptions or even posts, using shorter and simpler sentences – along with avoiding big and messy paragraphs – will ensure you’re pinging servers with the mobile-friendly indicators needed.
With mobile-first indexing now the “law of the land”, many websites are scrambling to recover from lost traffic and rankings. The effects this is having on your brand could be immense, so be sure to act quickly to rectify any problems. By offering a mobile version of your website and optimizing content for it, you can continue to serve your audience(s) with minimal hassle.