google_mobile_friendlyBoth privately and professionally, mobile devices are well positioned in our daily lives by now - be it for communications, information or transactions. The mobile use of the Internet reflects more than ever what we do, besides supporting us in our everyday lives and digitizing many areas of our lives without saying. In fact, we find the whole Internet world in our pocket at all times. To no surprise, the five most popular Internet uses on the mobile phone are email correspondence, online shopping, world news and search engine queries, according to various studies.

Considering this, you are most probably wondering what Google’s change of its search results for smartphones will bring, as it will affect your marketing efforts enormously. Especially, since search has tipped from being desktop-first to mobile-first, with the majority of consumers and business customers using smartphones and tablets now. Now on April 21, Google introduced its new ranking algorithm that identifies a site’s mobile-friendliness and places it higher in search results. As you can imagine, Google's update could hurt brands and companies badly if deemed mobile-unfriendly. What Google wants to achieve is pushing shop and website operators towards the mobile path by forcing them to focus on a "mobile-friendly" web presence to keep up with consumers’ demands and not to be left behind.

Search is one of the main activities on a smartphone

When asked what they consider being the main functions of a smartphone, 78.3% of respondents say search via search engine, placing the Internet search in second place right behind the phone feature with 79.9% of the main functions of a smartphone. Therefore, it can be assumed that the information search is one of the most popular uses of a smartphone, as it is the starting point of many excursions into the vastness of the Internet. Besides, the smartphone is not only used when on the go, but also when sitting on the couch – always ready to go to search and retrieve information.

What cannot be found, does not exist

But not only statistical numbers have long been reason enough for being found digitally. Starting this month, Google delivers search engine results from websites on mobile devices only if their presentation qualities meet mobile standards. Many websites and shop owners risk to lose not only website visits and online sales, but have to consider the phrase that will be sustainably strengthened: "What Google does not find, does not exist or is not important enough". Indeed, people who are already used to accumulated knowledge and content of the entire world on their mobile helper, anytime and anywhere, can come to this conclusion even faster and above all more lasting.

What exactly will change?

With the Google "mobile-friendly'-update, signals that indicate an optimization for mobile devices are evaluated positively as a ranking factor for mobile search queries. Conversely, non-optimized content of a URL is significantly devalued, especially since Google creates no separate search index for mobile users. In the future, search engine results depend, therefore, heavily on whether the end device used for searching is able to display the found website correctly. If the page is not optimized for mobile devices, it probably is not listed at all or only on the hindmost seats.

By Daniela La Marca