Google changing smartphone search result rankings

Mm devicesGoogle announced yesterday that it has made changes to the rankings of smartphone search results. They will be looking as some common issues with “desktop” sites when visited on mobile. If your site fails or behaves irrelevantly or annoyingly on mobile, you are likely to be dinged.

They mentioned two very common mistakes and some suggestions on how to fix them:

Faulty Redirects

Some websites have a URL for someone looking at their site on a desktop and a separate URL for users on a smartphone (often called an m. or “em dot” site). When the desktop page redirects a person on a smartphone to a mobile (m. page) that does not exist, or that does not have the same content as the desktop page (like redirecting the user to the mobile home page), this can frustate the user. The solution to this would be to direct smartphone users to the equivalent mobile page, and if this page does not exist, show the desktop version.

Smartphone-only Errors

Sometimes content that works correctly on a desktop browser does not work the same way, or does not work at all on a mobile device. One of the most common examples of this is when content on your site requires Adobe Flash to work. If your site uses Flash, it will not work on any iPhone or any Android version 4.1 or higher.

Correcting these problems can mean the difference between your site being shown on page 1 of a mobile search result or being shown on page 4. If you’d like to make sure your site looks great on mobile devices, we can help! We also offer classes on improving your SEO and search engine rankings, where you will hear the tips and tricks to attracting more visitors and potential customers to your site. We will also soon be holding a “responsive design / development” class, so you can banish those m. sites forever in favor of having one site the works well on all devices. As ours does. 😀