This April 21, Google is slated to release updates to its algorithm that deals with searches made through mobile devices. As you are well aware, mobile searches are so much in vogue that there are some websites, like myntra.com, that are doing away with their bona fide websites. They are going to rely entirely on mobile apps! Even flipkart.com is slated to go that way soon, because they are apparently not happy with the revenue that they are generating through PCs. In this post, I have shut out all the clamor gathering storm around the April 21 update of Google and listed some key points that you need to know.
Changes to Expect from Google for Mobile Searches
The buzz from the ground is that Google is coming up with a completely new algorithm for mobile searches. It will be able to index through Android as well as iOS apps. The chances stem from the fact that lately Google has been tinkering hard with their mobile SERP, the app searches and even searches on Google Play. Experts also feel that with the new algorithm, there will be a new indexing system designed solely for mobile searches. There are definitely indications that Google has already started testing an index that can pick up content from apps.
Question: Will Traditional Searches be Affected?
The question that you must be waiting to ask now is, how will this whole restructuring affect the rankings of the usual, traditional searches? For example, if your website does not have a mobile version, will that hamper your ranks? The answer is no, from Google at least! But there is no one out there who will go out on a limb to support you on your carrying on without a mobile edition of your website. You can launch a workable version for mobile devices, if not a state-of-the-art mobile website.
The Magnitude of Impact of Mobile Searches Algorithm
It is already in the grapevine that the April 21 update will be more impactful than the Panda and Penguin updates. That’s saying quite a lot, actually! It is still early days to ascertain thoroughly, but this new update will surely have a strong impact on Android devices. Impact is also billed to be felt on iOS, though these two are quite different from each other in terms of searches. An area of difference exists in the zone of deep linking. Google is looking at the use of emails through mobiles and how it affects the SERPs. Accessing emails through hand-held devices have shot up by 180% in the last couple of years. Google is not going to let that be brushed under the carpet!
Does your Website Qualify for Mobile Search?
At this critical juncture, you surely want to know if the website that you have is considered ‘mobile friendly’ by Google. Make note here that the answer is either Yes or No for Google. There is no percentage figure to indicate how mobile friendly or otherwise your website is. To know whether your website qualifies, key in a simple query on your mobile with the tag ‘site:nameofwebsite.com’. You will get to know the answer almost instantly. This is called Google’s Mobile Friendliness Tool. There may be times when there is some lag of time between the checking tool and the crawler. As a result, you may see different results for a website at the same time! To keep out of this tangle, always check with this tool when you uploading a website and making it live.
Mobile Friendly Website or App?
There are brands that are landed with the thankless choice of picking either a mobile friendly website or developing an app. This may be due to financial constraints. Ideally, you want both! But if you cannot, you must go for the mobile friendly website. Try to concentrate on brining this website seamlessly across all mobile device platforms. If you have a user experience that cannot be delivered without an app, only then pick it over a mobile friendly website.
The Final Word
This is a developing story and will have its twists and turns by the time the update rolls out this April 21. And when it does, be sure to remember than you read about it here first! Then, I will try to write back another post to review the update and match it up with my predictions here.
Stay tune for that one!