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Updated: April 25, 2024

By now, most small business owners understand the importance of their website being mobile-friendly—but what many don’t understand is that things change.

If your website previously passed Google’s Mobile-Friendly Test, it may not now. And, just because one page passes the test, doesn’t mean they all do.

Back in 2015, Google’s search algorithm began punishing website pages that don’t deliver a user-friendly experience from mobile devices.

Typical issues that make a website page unfriendly are unreadable text, frustrating navigation, and slow/non-loading pages.

In 2018, Google switched to mobile-first indexing, meaning that they look at the mobile version of your site first to decide how high you should rank.

So, if the desktop version of your site is amazing, but the mobile version is not responsive, you have a big problem!

Why is “Mobile Friendly” Such a Big Deal?

Google wants to do the same thing you do—give their customers the best possible experience.

The less frustrating a Google search is, the happier the searcher is, and the more likely they’ll use Google again.

And, you see all those people staring at their phones everywhere you turn? As you can imagine, it’s becoming more and more likely that that people are checking out your site from a mobile device.

The Evolution of Mobile Responsiveness

Over the past several years, Google’s emphasis on mobile responsiveness has increased substantially.

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As outlined in my recent insights into Google’s algorithm changes for 2024 on my Hub Mama Hub, mobile user experience continues to take center stage in determining search rankings.

Here’s a summary of what’s new with Google in their 2024 algorithm update:

  • AI-Powered Search: Google is intensifying its use of AI in search algorithms, emphasizing the importance of machine learning in SEO.
  • Speed & User Experience Takes Center Stage: More emphasis is placed on site speed, easy navigation, and a user-friendly layout.*
  • Privacy-Centric SEO Practices: Google prioritizes secure and privacy-centric websites, necessitating data protection measures.
  • Content Quality Reimagined: Quality content and E-A-T standards (Expertise, Authoritativeness, Trustworthiness) are paramount. Low-quality content is frowned upon.
  • Voice Search Optimization: Optimizing for voice queries is becoming a higher priority.

Given these changes, it’s clear that a website’s mobile responsiveness is no longer just a checkbox—it’s a critical factor in determining search rankings and user experience because without mobile responsiveness, a website doesn’t stand a chance of satisfying any of the factors in Point #2. (This is why I am steering as many clients as possible toward the IHUBApp, which significantly outperforms traditional websites in these aspects.)

Take the Google Mobile Friendly Test

Like everything else, testing a website’s mobile friendliness has gotten more complex.

If you’re up for a bit of a technical deep dive, click on this link and, starting with your Home page, check every page on your website—Google’s Mobile Friendly Test

Here are a few nuggets of good news from Google:

  • Each page on a website is judged individually so, if a specific page is unfriendly, they don’t punish your entire site.
  • If you correct an unfriendly page, Google will re-rank it in “real-time.” (Note: Vice versa is also true.)
  • Word has it that super high-ranking pages are not impacted quite as much.

As I mentioned, a website is a living, breathing entity—even if it previously passed the test, it can fail on retests so test regularly!

If your head spins just thinking about this, shoot me a message or give me a call. I’m happy to test your site for you and give you honest feedback and recommendations.

My goal is to make the process not only painless, but exciting as well.

Choosing the Right Website Solution

In mid-2022, Scribaceous, Inc., officially became an InspireHub agency, enabling us to provide small business clients with websites that are not just highly mobile-responsive, but are also mobile app—for a LOWER price than a WordPress website.

This is an amazing opportunity for my small business owner clients, so if you’re looking to get a new website or update an old one, do go check it out — IHUBApp PWA. Then, let’s connect and chat about if this is a better solution for you than a WordPress website.

About the author : Janet Doré

Janet Doré is the founder and CEO (Chief Everything Officer) of Scribaceous, Inc., a boutique design company specializing in branding & graphic design, IHubApp PWAs, WordPress websites, and optimized blog content. She is also the proud creator of the Hub Mama program where she trains and mentors those looking to grow their own freelance Hubmaster business.

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