10 Oct Are you Mobile Friendly?
We’re not talking about the love you have for your trusty iPhone – instead we are referring to how your website is treated by Google or other search engines and if it passes the ‘mobile friendly’ test.
Years ago when mobile data first came to the fore people were amazed that they could view websites on their Nokia mobile phones. The screen was so small that text was displayed in minute fonts and the user had to continually scroll around the screen using hardware keys. To be able to ‘surf the web’ as it used be known on a mobile device was something revolutionary many years ago.
Things have come a long way since then – or have they? As mobile phone use accelerated many developers began building website specifically for mobile devices – this meant that the code could detect if you were using a mobile phone to view a website and CSS would then swap out the desktop version for a specially designed mobile version. Some sites still use versions of this technology.
However an inherent problem began to present itself as the type of handsets grew in number. By 2010 over 5 billion mobile phone subscriptions existed and developers found themselves in a quandary – it became very difficult to keep refining website code to present your site properly on every single new type of mobile handset.
This is where responsive web design comes in. Instead of trying to make a different website for every device we now produce websites that will adapt to ANY device they are viewed on. Whether it is an iPhone, a Samsung Note 7 (or not!), tablet, iPad or desktop computer we make sure our websites scale to the specific screen resolution chosen by the end user.
Responsive website design took a more important turn on April 21st 2015 when Google introduced it’s mobile friendly ranking algorithm. What did this mean? Quite simply on that date Google decided that if your website isn’t mobile friendly (You can test it with Google’s Mobile Friendly Tool) then you won’t show up or rank in searches done on mobile devices. This is one of the biggest nods to where we are at now in terms of browsing habits – most people now use mobile devices instead of desktop or laptops to search for information. This includes your business or website.
If you’re not offering a mobile friendly site to your potential customers then you’re losing out to competitors who are.