Even though it has given the 21st of April as a deadline for non-responsive pages to be updated, the giant will not budge. Providing a great browsing experience from all devices is no longer an advantage, it is a must. Google informed everyone of this new measure through their official blog. This is not a triviality, websites that are not correctly optimized risk loosing between 20 and 30% of their traffic.
The popular browser’s aim with this move is to show companies, once and for all, how important responsive design is, providing easy browsing whether on a computer, smartphone or tablet.
So Google will let well-adapted websites through the filters and basically ostracise those that aren’t. This will be a big blow to the SEO positioning of companies who have slacked in this regard.
Users will be the main beneficiaries of this purge because, when making a search, those to come up tops will be websites that have been validated at all levels: from content to device compatibility.
According to Search Engine Land, with this change in algorithm, Google expects to change the display results by 40%, a larger change than those set by other similar precedents such as Penguin or Panda. Mobile searches take up over 50% of the total, so it will have a great impact on these.
If you want to check a site, Google has enabled an address where you can go and evaluate websites’ compatibility levels. But the change in Google’s algorithm is not all to do with mobile sites. Their algorithm now rewards sites that work hard on the content, not like before when the most important thing was to repeat the key words no matter the cost.
Another remarkable feature of the announcement is that, for the first time ever, Google has officially recognised a SEO positioning factor, setting a date for the algorithm update when the SEO factor will become a sine qua non condition to promote one website over others.
In conclusion, adapting and quoting Bruce Lee’s famous words: “Be responsive my friend”. At Innwise we always use this type of design for our hotelier clients. That way we have anticipated Google’s moves and will avoid any penalizations from the 21st of April onwards.