If your site hasn’t been getting the traffic it once was, one potential causes for your website woes may be mobile related. With the advent of smartphones and faster mobile internet speeds, more and more people are accessing websites through their mobile device.
Websites that aren’t mobile friendly can be missing out on traffic. First, people that usually visit a site from a desktop browser, but find the experience lacking on mobile, will look for a site they can use easily on both desktop and mobile browsers. Second, Google now includes mobile friendliness as a ranking factor for mobile search results. So it makes sense to ensure that a site is mobile friendly.
Google launched a mobile friendliness tool to help website owners determine if their site was mobile friendly enough for Google. And while that tool was effective and helped a lot of business owners avoid ranking drops when Google launched it’s mobile friendly algorithm. The search giant recently announced it was going to make a good thing better with new updates to the mobile tool.
“Mobile is close to our heart – we love seeing more and more sites make their content available in useful & accessible ways for mobile users,” the company wrote in a blog post. “To help keep the ball rolling, we’ve now launched a new Mobile Friendly Test.”
At present, both tools will be available for a while. According to Google, the updated tool provides their developers with room to continue to improve on the tools functionality. The explicitly state that “over time, we expect it to replace the previous Mobile Friendly Test”.
Additionally, the updated mobile friendliness tool works well on your smartphone. Though most website owners tend to work on their sites from anything besides a mobile device (have you tried to write code with a smartphone keyboard!), the having the test available from a smartphone is helpful for if those who quickly need to double-check something there!
As the main purpose of this tool is to help websites become more mobile compatible, the new tool is linked from Google’s Search Console’s mobile usability report. Alternately, the tool available directly at https://search.google.com/search-console/mobile-friendly.
Given the importance of mobile compatiability for the modern internet searcher, it’s vital that business owners use the mobile friendliness tool to check on their own sites and to check them often. Best practices for mobile compatibility change over time, so it’s worth it for business owners to use the new tool often to ensure they’re always on the leading edge.
For more news about recent updates and changes to Google, read this article on Google’s changes to make it easier to find local content through search.