It should come as no surprise that Google finally rolled out its first mobile-first index. With so many users accessing mobile devices, the search tech giant has aptly responded to one of the most critical shifts in shifting consumer behaviors over the last few years. Last year, research revealed mobile devices account for 57 percent of all traffic, and hence it is not hard to understand why Google plans to make mobile-first indexing a priority in 2018 and beyond.
The move will see Google access the mobile version of a website to index and rank content. Google will also query desktop device search with an index with mobile content to find the most authoritative, relevant response. The mobile version of your website will become the primary version once the index switches over.
Monitor Google crawl data
You will receive notification from Google search console when your site has been switched over to the mobile-first index. However, for effective search engine optimization, you will need to dig deeper to monitor Google’s online activity and learn how search engines will access a website and what they see when they get there.
Understand the mobile user journey
User attention spans are decreasing day by day, and they are even shorter on a mobile device than their desktop counterpart. So, it is essential to incorporate the concept of the micro-moment in your SEO strategy to conduct and organize keyword research. This can be done by understanding the structure or user path and framing a user’s path to purchase or to conversion, with a specific focus on the needs users searches on Google along with the way.
Deliver tailored content for mobile
One of the biggest misconception of mobile-index that if you have a responsive, you need to do very little to get ready to face this shift. Now, this holds true, only if your content already caters to a mobile audience. For a successful mobile-index SEO strategy, your content needs to help users achieve this goal quickly. It is best to understand the needs of your users and devise a memorable experience to delight your customers.
Cover the technicality
Here is a quick checklist to prepare for the mobile-first index:
- Metadata- Check your metadata to see if you can optimize for higher click-through rate (CTR) on mobile devices.
- User experience – Analyze your data to see where the bottlenecks are on your site journey. Bottlenecks can be a lengthy loading, challenging to read content on a smartphone or unclear images.
- Test for speed – Use mobile site speed test from Google to identify any areas you can accelerate. If in doubt, contact our professional web design company to make your site faster.
The mobile-first index is coming, so it is best to monitor the new changes if you want to accelerate your growth when it invariably arrives for your site.