In the age of Dynamic Serving and Responsive Design, developing your visibility on mobile devices becomes essential. In fact, 61% of users who are disappointed by their mobile experience on a site, won’t even return to the site via desktop!

Become mobile friendly

logo_mobileThe arbiter which tells you whether or not your site is mobile friendly is the ad-hoc tool which Google makes available to webmasters to test the pages on their site: the mobile compatibility test tool. Note that other site templates must be tested, not just the home page. You can also use Google Webmasters Tools to identify mobile usability issues. The Pagespeed insight tool won’t give you relevant information.

compatibility mobile test


Mobile friendly evaluation criteria is simply binary. So you’re either mobile-friendly, or you’re not!

  • If you are only OK on 75% of the criteria => you are not mobile friendly
  • If you are OK on the only criteria tested by the ad hoc tool => you are mobile friendly
  • If you have the mobile friendly label => then you are mobile friendly (obviously)

Note that the algorithm change of 21 April, 2015 will only affect SMARTPHONE searches and not TABLET searches

The main elements tested

  • The “viewport” setting
  • Font size
  • Link spacing
  • The absence of Flash

But you must also pay special attention to:

  • mobile 404 errors
  • incorrect redirects
  • the speed of your mobile version: a slow site is a disadvantage
  • the configuration of your robots.txt
  • App download interstitials (wrongly configured, they cause blocking!)

The rendition of your mobile version must be readable for Googlebot. Blocking certain resources will result in an illegible mobile version and a verdict of incompatibility not always deserved!


Googlebot tests compatibility criteria every time!

How will it affect my traffic?

The impact will be significant, but don’t panic because these things must be kept in perspective. The algorithm will indeed affect smartphone queries, but these new criteria are only “one” of 200 signals used to rank your results. On the other hand, according to our calculations it’s sensible to expect a decrease in traffic of something less than 10%.

Emergency plan if you’re in a hurry

  1. Test your page templates using the Mobile Compatibility Check Tool
  2. Identify any pages that report search engine traffic which is not compatible
  3. Correct problems on these pages first – or else create a mobile-compatible version
  4. For other pages: problems can be solved AFTER 21 April (but don’t delay too long because you will lose visitor traffic)

To know more about the good mobile strategy to adopt or to have you accompanied by SEO experts …


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