Why You Need to Ensure Mobile Usability for SEO Purposes
Google likes to talk about how the changes to its search algorithms are all being done in order to benefit internet users. So for example, the online search giant wants to give users relevant searches, involving nearby locations if that is relevant to their keywords, and so on. One particular tweak to the algorithm involves whether a site works well on mobile devices or not. The basic idea here is that Google has a way of checking for the mobile usability of a given site, and it will tend to give sites that work well on mobile devices a relatively higher search result ranking. The company even made a tool available online, so that website owners could check how Google views their site in terms of mobile usability.
Mobile Usability Truly Does Have an Effect on SEO
Because of this adjustment to the algorithm, there was some upheaval in the rankings. Some sites, which used to rank well saw themselves drop out of search results for certain keywords. On the other hand, some site owners did see their sites rank somewhat better. This just goes to show that mobile usability has a measurable and even significant effect, in some cases, on rankings. When Google first issued the guidance, some site owners didn’t take it seriously because they couldn’t at first see any changes in their search ranking weight. Now, though, this is something that all well-informed site owners take seriously. And this is something that you need to consider, plan for and implement as well.
Mobile Usability Also Affects Stickiness
The importance of mobile usability goes even beyond the algorithm tweak of Google. This is because another factor that search engines are also considering in their rankings is stickiness, or how much time a user spends on a particular website. If the person arrives on the site, but then clicks away quickly or clicks back to the previous site right away, then the site is not sticky at all. This allows Google to conclude that the user did not see the site as a good solution or match for the search that was carried out. So you want to maximize stickiness to give the impression that users are happy to have found your website, and they find it relevant to their keyword search. Now, if the mobile usability of your site is poor, users will be less likely to stick around because many of them today do their surfing on their phones or tablets. So again, mobile usability has an effect on search engine rankings, even in indirect ways.
Mobile Usability Also Affects the Likelihood That Your Site Gets Shared
In addition to the various SEO-related benefits of mobile usability, there is also the fact that a site, which scales and adapts well to mobile devices will be more likely to be shared. After all, if the content of a site is useful and it is nicely presented, a user will be encouraged to share the page with a friend or colleague who may also be looking for similar information. But even if the content is good, but the layout, typography and overall look of the page is quite bad, then it is doubtful any visitor will wish to share it with others.