AKRON — By now, there's a good likelihood you've heard of the Google algorithm that takes a Web page's mobile friendliness into account. Many members of the tech world dubbed the change mobilegeddon or mobilpocalypse that went into effect April 21.
There was panic and chaos, much like there is anytime Google changes are announced. But this one was a bit different. This announcement was made in advance to help give websites a chance to update to improve the mobile friendliness, something a lot of the websites I watch seemed to take advantage of.
The premise of the change was that Google would categorize a page as mobile friendly or not, and then that would play a role when a mobile search is performed. A page categorized as mobile friendly ranks better than a page that is not.
The basic question asked when these announcements are made or algorithms change is, “How does this affect me?” If you get much of your website traffic from search engines, then this is something to pay attention to.
From there, I would suggest you take a look at the technology people are using to visit your site. If cell phones are even a third of your traffic, then you may want to consider making your most relevant, most trafficked pages mobile friendly.
If your site traffic is coming from a desktop or tablet, then it's important to know those search results are not affected by mobilegeddon.
You may also be asking, “How do I make my site mobile friendly or responsive?” Or, “What's happened since this change went live?”
Well, experts and tech blog writers are saying the change hasn't done a whole heck of a lot. So that gives you a bit of time to develop a plan. And that's always preferred to a knee-jerk reaction to Google.
So now you have a bit of time to plan your next steps. I would look around and find templates for responsive sites that you think look great and talk to your developer. If you don't have a developer on staff, it might be a good idea to start a discussion with someone or a company that can help make these changes inexpensively.
If you don't have a lot of traffic coming from mobile searches or visiting your site on a mobile phone, you may want to consider whether you're missing potential customers and revenue from those missed appointments and calls. If there is potential business from that audience, taking your website responsive or mobile friendly may be something you need to consider anyway.
The mobilegeddon may be just the push you need, but take the time to think it out and plan instead of panicking.