Understanding the Difference in Search Engine Algorithms and Why Your Business Requires a Mobile Friendly Website

These days, most web users carry a smartphone, rather than a laptop or iPad. Since 2015, mobile searches have surpassed desktop searches on Google. Google and other search engines are taking steps to ensure mobile friendly websites keep up with changing search demographics.

Every year mobile technology becomes more user-friendly. About two-thirds of web searches are performed using a mobile device. Approximately 94 percent of queries are performed using Google. It is crucial for businesses to have a mobile-friendly website that ranks high on relevant Google searches.

What Is the Mobile Index Split Index

In 2015, Google released an algorithm that ranked websites based on their ability to be both desktop and mobile friendly. This policy caused websites to gain or lose positions; based on their ability to reach all search customers. Businesses either avoided or embraced this technology. In 2017, Google created more new search guidelines. The result created two separate indexes: traditional search (desktop) and mobile. This change affects businesses from an analytics point of view. Managing one page position per keyword/search term has been the norm. Now a business must monitor their ranking for that same search term or keyword, for desktop and mobile. More searches are being performed on mobile devices, so Google sees mobile as a priority. Desktop searches are still important. Efforts should be made to develop and maintain a responsive, mobile friendly website.

How Speed Factors In

In addition to having separate ranking in both desktop and mobile searches, Google also prioritizes websites by their speed. A properly keyworded, indexed, relevant website loads quickly and ranks higher. This is why testing is important; especially if your target market is located in different areas of the U.S. or globally.

Critical Performance Guidelines

To be mobile friendly, your site must meet critical performance guidelines. As previously mentioned, one of the factors Google uses in its algorithm is page loading speed. This is due to the site abandonment mobile users perform when faced with a slow loading site. When factoring in advertising budgets, marketing, and technical fees for a mobile friendly website, speed and visitor retention goes hand-in-hand. Conversions are the ultimate goal. Having a visitor stay on your site, as long as possible, improves your chances of gaining a new or returning customer.

Employing responsive web design will ensure your mobile visitors have an experience comparable to a desktop device. Assuming a desktop site will easily convert to a mobile site will not yield the same results for the user. Sites should optimized for both desktop and mobile. Remember, Google crawls sites to check for relevant content. If a site loses some content, it could negatively affect search rankinAs more and more changes occur, it is imperative businesses ensure their desktop and mobile friendly websites perform equally well on search engines.