Are you Mobile First ready?

In the following video, Custard’s Operations Director (and veteran technical SEO) Chris Smith tells you how to get your website ready for Google’s Mobile First update:

Are you Mobile First ready?

Are you prepared for Google's Mobile First update? Our Operations Director (and veteran technical SEO) Chris Smith tells you all you need to know.

Posted by Custard Online Marketing on Friday, 26 January 2018

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How to prepare your website for the upcoming Mobile First update

I’m Chris Smith, operations director at Custard Online Marketing and I take the lead on our technical SEO projects.

I want to share with you some essential tips to prepare your website for the upcoming mobile first update to ensure that you are properly set up for today’s ever changing natural search environment

When is Mobile First coming?

Google has been doing a lot of experimentation with their mobile first algorithm during 2017, and are expected to complete a full roll out during the first half of 2018.

What is changing exactly?

What this means for you is that when crawling your site, as far as Google is concerned the primary variant will switch from the desktop version to the mobile version.

Whilst the concept of creating your site with Mobile in mind is very simple – to design your website for mobile users first and then scale your way up for other device types – there are a number of common pitfalls which we have seen websites become victims of, leading to a decline in organic visibility. Your site could also be at risk of this happening.

What sort of measures need taking to prepare for the change?

It’s crucial that your mobile site mirrors your desktop version in terms of features and content.

For example, on ecommerce sites the intro copy on category pages for desktop should be identical to that on mobile, and ancillary features such as ‘add to favourites’ or ‘add to compare’ should be available to both platforms. This principle should be applied consistently throughout the whole site.

It’s also important to make sure your key content is ‘above the fold’ on both mobile and desktop. You can make use of expandable text boxes with a “read more” link to help improve user experience on mobile in this regard and avoid pushing product content too far down the page.

The most important thing overall is to offer a good user experience. The site needs to be genuinely useful to desktop and mobile users alike, adding value to their journey by offering unique content and simplifying the means of achieving their objective.

What single change is going to have the biggest impact?

Don’t underestimate the value of increasing the font sizes you use on mobile to provide great legibility on small screens.

Are there any other quick wins?

Ensure that entries in drop down menus and other navigation controls are consistent, and that information within pop-ups and modals is available to both platforms.

Meta data such as rich snippets and structured data should also be consistently applied on all variants of your site.

Taking steps such as these will help futureproof your site for the switch to Mobile First indexing, and those clients of ours who have already prepared for the change are seeing benefits in their organic performance even now.

If you want help with this you can find out more at custard.co.uk/mobile/.

Are you Mobile First ready? This is the question that every webmaster should be asking themselves. With Google expected to roll out Mobile First indexing during the first half of 2018, it is vital to ensure your site is ready for this change.

mobile-first-iphone-x

The above screengrab is taken from an announcement by Google about their planned switch to mobile first indexing. Failing to take heed of this could mean you fall foul of Google’s guidelines, leading to a decline in your organic search visibility.

But don’t panic, we’ve shared some essential tips below on how to adopt a Mobile First approach for your website.

What is Mobile First?

The clue really is in the name. Google will soon consider the mobile version of your site as the primary variant, ahead of other device types such as desktop or tablet.

Put simply, your site will be ranked principally on the mobile experience offered, and not based on the desktop experience as it was historically.

This means that when designing your site, you should prioritise mobile users first and scale your way up to other device types.

Need more help?

If you have any concerns regarding your Mobile First strategy, get in touch today. Our technical team is made up of senior SEOs who are highly skilled in mobile SEO techniques and can assist you every step of the way.

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