Starting April 21st, Google will begin measuring mobile-friendliness as a ranking signal for websites in mobile search results.  If you’re site meets the criteria for Google’s Mobile-Friendly designation, you might get a boost in the rankings.

For desk-top users, Google claims the criteria will not be a factor, at least for now.  But with about 65% of search being conducted on mobile devices, mobile-friendly rendering and load times are of significant importance to user experience.  And great user experience is the primary goal of all Google’s algorithm updates and changes.

Google Webmaster Trends Analyst Zineb Ait Bahajji was quoted as indicating the mobile-friendly ranking signal will have a larger impact than Penguin or Panda:

Zineb from Google at #smx Munich about the mobile ranking update: is going to have a bigger effect than penguin and panda!

— Aleyda Solis (@aleyda) March 17, 2015

Passed Google Mobile-Friendly TestThe Mobile-Friendly Test

The good news for site owners is Google has created a simple test for the “mobile-friendly” designation.

Simply enter your URL here:  https://www.google.com/webmasters/tools/mobile-friendly/ .

Within a moment or two you will be notified if your site passes or fails the mobile-friendly criteria.

Making the Mobile-Friendly Grade

As we would expect, Google Webmaster Mobile SEO along with most developers and experts are recommending responsive website development as a best-practice solution.

Responsive sites have benefits for all users, but also benefit businesses in that they can deal with TVs, desk-tops, laptops, tablets and phones TOGETHER in ONE website.  Because the site renders and responds according to the size of the device, it eliminates the need for multiple sites and multiple search bot crawlers.

These sites are responsive.  You can check them at different sizes across multiple devices.

Responsive Web Design

If your site is not responsive or otherwise mobile-friendly, choose a responsive theme on your DIY site, or contact us or your developer to ensure mobile-friendly status is in your reach as soon as possible.  April 21 changes are right around the corner.


Cindy is the founding President at 17blue Digital Marketing. She's passionate about helping businesses reach their goals and impact their communities.