How to Prepare for Mobile-First Indexing

mobile-first indexingBack in July, it was announced that Google would be delaying the rollout of their mobile-first indexing update until March 2021. This setback is mostly due to Google discovering that numerous sites were not prepared for the switch.

So for what seems to be for the first time ever, we are being given advance notice on an update. This will allow us time to make needed adjustments to our websites in order to not to be hurt from the changes coming from indexing sites mobile-first.

5 Issues You Should Resolve

In order to have your site ready for the big switch, Google has encouraged website owners to take a closer look at the following aspects of their sites.

Media (Photos and Video)

As page loading has been a huge factor for most web marketers for quite some time now, it should be no surprise that Google insists you follow their best practices for both images and videos on mobile.  Some things to keep in mind include:

  • Image quality
  • Alt tags
  • Placement
  • Video markup

Content

For some webmasters, the decision to hide some content on mobile can be a great way to increase or influence conversions, but for Google, if you decide to not display your primary content (e.g.; content you wish to help you rank), it can end up hurting your rankings.

Blocked Assets

Blocking things such as .css files, images, and more can cause your mobile pages to not only display inaccurately, but prevent Google’s crawl bots to not render your page properly.

Lazy Loading

Google recommends abiding by their lazy loading “best practices” and advises the following in this statement:

“In particular, avoid lazy loading your primary content based on user interactions (like swiping, clicking, or typing), because Googlebot won’t trigger these user interactions.”

Robots Meta Tags

Did you know that your robots tags can be different in both desktop and mobile? Google advises that they are reflected on both platforms. For example, noindex or nofollow tags.

Our Top Tips for Mobile Success

On top of your adjustments to meet Google’s standards for proper mobile-indexing, while you’re at it why not take a stab at some of our top recommendations for improving your mobile design.

  • Place forms high on the page to maximize conversions
  • Ensure your phone number is visible and clickable
  • Make sure your font sizes are not too small, nor too big
  • Use a hamburger menu to allow users to easily browse your site

More Articles on Mobile Design and SEO

Interested in reading more on mobile and its importance when it comes to your online marketing efforts? Take a look at some related articles:

Need Help Prepping for the Switch?

Our team of developers and designers would be happy to work with you to help redesign your website to ensure it is mobile-friendly and optimized for search engines. Head on over to our contact page to get started.

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