Mobile Friendly Websites Are Now A Must!

 In web design, web development
Google Demands Mobile-Friendly Websites
Mark this day – April 21st, 2015 – on your calendars. Today is the day Google makes it official and demands websites are mobile-friendly in order to be ranked as they should in search engines. Otherwise, you’ll start seeing your rankings drop in search results!It’s no surprise that people use mobile devices more and more as part of their daily lives. They’re convenient, they’re user-friendly and helpful when it comes to getting information fast and keeping in touch with people. We at OMIS have realized this through tracking the user statistics of all our clients; we see more and more a growth of traffic coming from mobile devices and mobile platforms.

Unfortunately, the size of your mobile device’s screen and the size of your monitor are completely different and the way a website looks on your iPhone or Samsung Galaxy is not going to be the same as it looks on your computer’s monitor. It’s because of this that Responsive Web Design was conceived of some 10 years ago and loosely born around 5 years ago. Today, Google makes the need for websites to be responsive a requirement in order to rank well.

So Is This A Good Thing?
Speaking with clients and colleagues, there are some mixed opinions about whether this is a good thing or not. Including myself, I’ve developed some websites in the past couple of years that aren’t mobile-friendly and now will need to be revised or redesigned to ensure it meets the new Google standards.

Once the dust settles, I am sure this will turn out to be a great change to Google’s search algorithm. What it all comes down to is providing users with the best possible search results and since we’re searching for websites just as much on our mobile devices as we are on our computers, it’s only fair that the presentation of your website be just as sharp looking on a mobile device as it is on a desktop computer.

Am I Mobile Friendly?
Are you curious to see if your website is mobile friendly? Thankfully the good people at Google have created an easy “Mobile Friendly” test link for you to enter your website address and see if it meets Google’s requirements. You can access this link by clicking here

What if you’re not?
Unfortunately the media has painted a very negative picture for what would happen if you don’t comply (My favorite is by far USA Today calling this “Mobilegeddon”). First of all, your website will not stop working or change the way it looks. It will act and work the same it always has. It will simply be subject to more scrutiny when it comes to ranking it properly in search engines. Over the last decade, Google has released various updates to their search algorithm to improve search results. (See here for Change History). Each update to the algorithm means we, as developers, have to make some change or accommodation to our client’s websites to reflect the new parameters of the update.

Is It Too Late?
It’s never too late! Although mobile traffic is quickly growing and almost taking over desktop traffic, the users we’ve been tracking still prefer the desktop route for the full website experience (easier keyboard, easier navigation, bigger display etc…). That being said, we believe this is because of the fact that most websites aren’t mobile friendly!

The OMIS Web Development Solution
Ever since we got wind about Google’s plan to affect search engine ranking based on how mobile friendly a website would be (around February of 2015) we established a “mobile-friendly” standard within all the websites we develop for our clients. That’s right! Making your website mobile-friendly is included when you hire us to build you a website! If you are curious to see if your website can be adapted to become mobile friendly and meet the Google standards, do not hesitate to contact us at info [at] omis.ca

Carlos Vilchez
Carlos Vilchez is a web consultant for OMIS.ca - Online Media & Internet Solutions. He's been tinkering with html and coding websites ever since the days of 14.4k dial-up, paying $2.25/minute for an internet connection. For nearly 2 decades, OMIS.ca has been providing small to medium sized businesses with affordable web design and hosting solutions, working out of Barrie, Ontario, Canada.
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