Is “mobile-friendly” an SEO ranking criterion?

Is “mobile-friendly” the new eldorado of natural references? Google seems to want to make it a defining criterion for SEO and is no longer hesitant to show it in the SERPS. Not all sites have a mobile version yet, some probably never will (complexity, cost, time, etc.). What risks does a site run if it is not mobile friendly? What are the advantages of a mobile site? And most importantly, why does Google give it so much importance these days?

You will be mobile friendly

It seems logical to know for sure that a site is a mobile version. It’s not uncommon to come across people who strongly believe that a site should (especially?) be designed for mobile (tablet and smartphone, I mean). I can’t totally blame them, insofar as the search will be done more on mobile than desktop. But from there only develop a site mobile friendly, there is a big difference. A site must be accessible everywhere on any carrier. Searchable does not necessarily mean mobile. Some incompatible sites are “readable” on a smartphone, even if they are not adapted to the terminal. That is of course not practical.

Google is therefore trying the mobile friendly, basically “your site is mobile, that’s good, you’re a winner”. What interest does Google have in promoting this “label”? At first we might think that our colorful friend leans towards a web search more in line with the canons of mobile: adaptive design, rendering speed, data usage, storage space, etc… Elementary, my dear Watson! 4G or not, we’re nowhere near as pleasant as we are on PC (Mac for friends). Suddenly, the benefits of being mobile-friendly are clear and becoming apparent.

An SEO positioning criterion?

As usual GG is laying the law and instead of going incrementally (yes I know, it tries to make people believe it, but that is ABSOLUTELY not the case) is putting a nice, well deserved label on and on every mobile site other nothing (for now). Like HTTPS, Google informs the visitor on the results page of mobile sites. As a result, the average visitor that we are will (voluntarily?) go to the site that offers him more reading comfort. Disapproved at the expense of another site, perhaps more relevant, for not being mobile friendly.

So is it a positioning criterion or not? For now it is not. Not in the same way as the so-called benefit of securing. The only benefit of being mobile-friendly right now is clearly the contribution of traffic or the drop in visitors, depending on the site’s situation. We can’t prove what I’m saying yet, it’s true. But in the long run, I really think this advantage will be competitive and make all the difference. Will this become a criterion in itself? Probably. Google won’t claim it initially but it will weigh (weigh already?) on a site’s visibility.

Do you need to transfer your site to a mobile version?

I’d rather say yes. But I would put conditions on it. What do we mean by mobile version first? A typical responsive design bootstrap or a special version? Mobile app or not? Before launching headlong, it will be necessary to clarify this situation. Then the mobile version, okay, but for what content? If we can all agree that a site mobile friendly should be lighter, what information should be put there? Isn’t this a risk of impoverishing the content of his site so that it can be easily used on mobile? All these questions are specific and specific to each project, but they must be answered to avoid the risk of error.

Why does Google promote mobile-friendly?

I suspect you already have the answer: AdWords. As the other said, if it’s free, the product is you. By giving SEOs new marbles to rank for (don’t overdo it either), they’ll jump right into this new craze and develop the mobile site to its fullest. And guess who will be the big winner? Of course we don’t get anything for nothing. We’re doing business with GG, he has to fend for himself. What I mean is that apart from the ‘nobility’ of the gesture, the ulterior motive is always present. Desktop advertising on mobile is ugly, you can’t see it, it’s poorly integrated and the click-through rate is crashing. Suddenly, how we can force this very small world to change their habits: we create a new criterion for them that will very quickly promote the emergence of millions of mobile sites. Sorry, it’s my paranoid side that stands out ;D

So mobile site or no mobile site?

Yes of course, under certain conditions as explained above, but yes. If a mobile site makes Google richer than it already is (I digress, I know!), it also allows your business to take a new direction, reach more people, attract more traffic, and probably improve your CTR and your KING. So a website mobile friendly should be part of your short term positioning strategy at the risk of letting the caravan pass and ending up at the back of the pack.

Photo credits: myposeo. com

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