By Carl Weiss
I’m sure you’re familiar with the term Armageddon, which is the biblical prediction for the end of the world. However, Google introduced the Internet version of the phenomenon which has been deemed Mobilegeddon. While it might not represent the end of the World Wide Web, what Google has indicated is that if your website is not deemed “mobile-friendly,” your listing could soon be relegated to the backwaters of the world’s most popular search engine. While this could be cause for many website owners to panic, they should take some comfort in the fact that when a major web portal tested the top 25,000 websites in the world, more than 10,000 of them failed, including the site of Homeland Security.
That’s the bad news. The good news is that before you throw yourself under the Google bus, there is a way to test your site to see if it is mobile-friendly. https://www.google.com/webmasters/tools/mobile-friendly/
If your site is deemed search engine unfriendly, you are in good company. According to searchengineland.com you are hardly alone:
Losers: Popular news sharing site Reddit topped the list of losers, followed by NBC Sports, Vogue,SongLyrics and Bloomberg Business. I suspect a bunch of people at Reddit are about to lose their minds over this. But the Reddit home page doesn’t test as mobile friendly, and that could be true of many other pages inside the site, as well.
The home pages of NBC Sports and SongLyrics didn’t test friendly either; I couldn’t even get Google’s mobile friendly testing tool to process SongLyrics. Vogue’s home page did test as friendly, but potentially it has problems with internal pages. http://searchengineland.com/winners-losers-google-mobilegeddon-219786
Knowing this, I spent the next three hours manually entering every one of the 173 websites we created and hosted for us and our clients. With the exception of one companyowned website and 7 client-owned sites we created before the advent of html5, all our clients came up as search engine friendly. (I am working with our webmaster to see why the one site created in html 5 has failed.)
What’s It All About, Google?
From Google’s perspective the answer is clear: Mobile is the future. Cellphone providers in the past five years have put a web-capable smartphone in the hands of 75% of the citizens in this country. (Nearly 80 million smartphone users do their social networking on the device as well.) As the price of smartphones continues to fall and desktop and laptops continue to shrink, will there come a time when ALL computers are quasi-mobile?
Image courtesy of statista.com
The popularity of phablets is also another way in which the lines between laptops, tablets and smartphones continues to blur. While phablets were merely smartphones on steroids two years ago, as solid state memory chips continue to get more powerful and ever more affordable, we are already starting to see phablets that can do nearly everything that a laptop can do.
Image courtesy of concept-phones.com
While cutting edge phablets, tablets, micro-pcs and mini-laptops give computer users an ever-expanding range of choices, from a website owner’s perspective, trying to create a 1-size-fits-all site can prove to be a challenge. That’s one of the reasons that dynamic programming languages such as html5 are all the rage. Below are the three most popular perspectives viewed via html5.
With the pick-a-size web surfing world, using a platform or code that can dynamically adapt your websites to whatever platform they might be viewed doesn’t just make sense from a Google-centric perspective. It also makes sense from a visibility issue, since the secret to online success is to make it easy for people to do business with you. Today that means different online strokes for different folks. If you aren’t ready, willing and able to allow people to view your sites on the platform of your choice, then Mobilegeddon will be the least of your worries.
Carl Weiss is president of Working the Web to Win, an award-winning digital marketing agency based in Jacksonville, Florida. You can listen to Carl live every Tuesday at 4 p.m. Eastern on BlogTalkRadio