Remember surfing the web from your T-Mobile Sidekick, circa 2005? You were so amazed you had the Internet in your pocket you didn’t care you had to scroll for days to see an entire web page. Or maybe you were like me, stuck with a brick-like cell phone and jealous of everyone’s technologically-advanced phones. (Zack Morris called. He wants his cellphone back…)
Nowadays, everyone and their grandma have a smartphone or tablet. If you can’t find what you’re looking for within 10 seconds, you’re probably off to the next website, never to return. With an infinite supply of knowledge at our fingertips, we expect to be able to access it wherever, whenever and as quickly as we want. It’s revolutionized the way we live.
Mobile Internet usage surpassed that of desktops in early 2014, so it should be of no surprise that over 60% of searches come from mobile devices. What is surprising, however, is that over 2/3 of Fortune 100 company websites (and almost HALF of Fortune 500 company websites) are not considered mobile-friendly.
Consumers are demanding and impatient. Over half of mobile users will abandon a website if it takes more than 3 seconds to load, and 79% probably won’t buy from you again if they’re dissatisfied with your website’s performance. As mobile search volumes continues to increase rapidly, businesses can expect to lose a significant amount of traffic if their web presence isn’t optimized for mobile.
Google, which controls over 75% of the US search market, has become synonymous with and even replaced the word “search.” (Haven’t you ever heard or said, “Google it”?) Google aims to take the frustration out of mobile searches by altering their search algorithm to serve users relevant, mobile-friendly results. Many have referred to this change as “mobilegeddon” due to the monumental impact it could have on businesses.
Google’s new search algorithm rewards sites that are mobile optimized and penalizes those that aren’t. How sites rank in Google search results is now significantly influenced by their mobile-friendliness, or lack thereof. It’s a win-win for Google, consumers and mobile-optimized websites, but it could be crippling for businesses whose websites are behind the times. While the change was quite the “mobilegeddon” people anticipated, it’s only a matter of time before websites that aren’t mobile-optimized become obsolete.
Are you using Flash? Tsk tsk… Flash is not commonly supported on mobile devices, which means Google will dock you for it. Check your site against Google’s mobile-friendly test. Google will check components like your website’s load time, design elements and whether your content fits the screen or requires scrolling. If your site isn’t mobile-friendly, it’s time to give it a facelift.