April deadlines, taxes and mobile. Google is making a change April 21st is your site ready?
Mobile, mobile, mobile. You may think we sound like a broken record around here. We have had multiple blogs in the last few months that are urging businesses in every industry to embrace mobile. We have had holiday statistics galore. But, yet there are still those out there that are resisting. Well, I am here to tell you that the clock is now ticking.
Typically April brings the dread of the tax man coming. April 15th, which happens to be today is Tax Day in the United States. Well this year, there is another day in April that is looming. April 21st. What's happening on April 21st you may ask? Well, on April 21st Google will begin promoting mobile friendly sites over those that are not. Yep, you heard me, Google is going to ding your non-mobile friendly or non- responsive site in search rankings.
On their official blog, Google states the following: "Starting April 21, we will be expanding our use of mobile-friendliness as a ranking signal. This change will affect mobile searches in all languages worldwide and will have a significant impact on our search results. Consequently, users will find it easier to get relevant, high-quality search results that are optimized for their devices." So, for all of you procrastinators out there, it's time to take Google's test. That's right, they have a test to show you just what they think of the responsiveness of your site. You can go take the test here and see for yourself if you should be expecting a fall in Google rankings.
Now, after the Black Friday shopping statistics that showed 52.1 percent of Thanksgiving Day traffic was mobile traffic and Black Friday traffic was 49.6 percent mobile. And, that's not all, mobile sales on Black Friday were up 28.2 percent. Mobile e-commerce sales accounted for 27.9 percent of the sales according to reports. With numbers like these, you can see why Google is making the push to giving higher search results to mobile friendly, responsive websites.
So, what do you do if your website fails the test above? Take a deep breath, find a developer and start planning to shift your out-dated site into a responsive website. What is a responsive website you may ask? Well, a responsive website recognizes the device that is accessing your website and sends the correct version of the website to whatever type of device is being used. Now, I understand that April 21st is next week. I also understand that fixing your problems in a week are unlikely, but it's not too late to start. Take this deadline from Google as the final kick in the pants you need to get out of the dark ages. It's April if you get moving now you have time to prepare for this year's holiday season, which as we all know comes around too fast every year. Now, waiting to go mobile doesn't just mean you are missing out on the holiday shopping traffic and e-commerce sales. Now it means it will make it harder for potential customers and clients to find you in Google. Don't make your business non-existent in Google searches by continuing to fight the mobile movement.