In 2015, searches on mobile officially exceeded those on desktop. So unsurprisingly, Google have made changes to put mobile first. That means in the next few months, Google will be separating its mobile and desktop indexes, with the former serving as its primary index.
This emphasis on providing the best experience for mobile users is the latest in a string of updates from the tech giant.
Starting in April 2015, the first update to be introduced was a mobile-friendly ranking signal, dubbed “Mobilegeddon”. This revolutionised search rankings by rewarding mobile-friendly websites, and placing them significantly higher than their desktop counterparts.
Later in the year, accelerated mobile pages (or AMPs) were announced. A collaboration between several leading technology firms, the open source framework allowed sites to produce lightweight pages, which were optimised for page speed. Initially, it was mostly news sites that capitalised on the benefits of the technology. However in August, Google announced that AMPs would now be included in their main results pages.
Speaking to Search Engine Land, Google's Gary Illyes reaffirmed the importance of AMP pages when pressed on his predictions for search in 2017.
“Well I guess you can guess that we are going to focus more and more on machine learning. Pretty much everywhere in search. But it will not take over the core algorithm. So that’s one thing."
"The other thing is that there is a very strong push for AMP everywhere. And you can expect more launches around that. Structure data, again this is getting picked up more and more by the leads. So that would be another thing.”
So what does that mean for businesses? Well, we see this as a clear sign that Google wants to take the obvious next step, and prioritise responsive sites over separate desktop and mobile versions. Which means that every business should be looking at its website’s entire user journey, from the landing page right though to conversion, and making sure it’s built for the palm of the hand.
If you want to read more about Google’s mobile updates, check out this link: