Working in today’s fast-paced environment means mobility is the key to accomplishing tasks on the go. This is true for both productivity as well as leisure, with people turning to their devices for everything from information to entertainment. Brands are aware of the need to build mobile responsive sites for two reasons, consumer demand and Google.
Google tells us that 94% of U.S. shoppers search with their smartphones and 77% of these searches occur at work or home. That means people would prefer to use their phones than a computer sitting right in front of them. As a result of this consumer behavior, Google now includes mobile responsiveness as part of its ranking algorithm. eCommerce merchants who previously had high rankings, excellent backlinks and traffic, but neglected to optimize their sites for mobile, quickly lost page rank.
If you think about it, Google’s attention to responsiveness is quite obvious. If Google finds that people are searching for products to buy online, but the website is impossible to read or navigate on mobile devices, then naturally they will search elsewhere.
Since March 2018 Google has moved forward with “Mobile-First Indexing.” In their words, “Mobile-first indexing means that we'll use the mobile version of the page for indexing and ranking, to better help our – primarily mobile – users find what they're looking for.” Although they say, “Mobile-first indexing is about how we gather content, not about how content is ranked,” you can bet that it is an essential factor in their ranking decision.
One way to check a website’s pages for mobile responsiveness is with Google’s tool. Paste this link into your browser, search.google.com/test/mobile-friendly, and then enter a page URL to test it.
Google is all about positive and faster user experience. When brands are responsive, they are investing in their customers. Their user-experience aligns brands with the correct long-term strategy of serving the customers. Google rewards mobile responsive sites with higher rankings, which coincides with higher organic traffic and sales.
Using Google’s Accelerated Mobile Page (AMP) assures you of higher rankings over websites that don’t use it. It’s been a requirement since 2016 for news stories to use AMP pages and in 2018 Google began using mobile page speed as a ranking metric. AMP pages load as much as six times faster. Some retailers reported increased conversions from 15% up to 50% due to lower wait times.
So, what does this all bode for eCommerce? The best approach is to find out what options are available to make your store mobile friendly. Brands like BigCommerce, Volusion, Shopify Plus, and others have apps available to aid in the transition. The best solution is to work with a partner and developers to ensure your pages load fast and work on mobile.
SEO, mobile responsiveness and website design directly affect your bottom-line by creating a better user experience. Making the right changes to your online environment can bring a higher ROI.
Contact us today to find out if your pages meet with Google’s mobile-indexing guidelines.