If there is one thing that could be said about Google’s ranking system, it’s that it undoubtedly works. By scouting the content of a certain page, Google evaluates it based on various factors and puts the best to the front. Even though this might not have been their initial intention, this made everyone online try harder when their content is in question. Because of this, today we have much more quality content online than just few years ago. However, there are some rumors that Google will soon add a new ranking factor. This factor will be mobile page speed of the website.
Mobile Has Taken Over
Since 2015, there are more Google searches on mobile than on desktop devices. Unfortunately, most website ranking parameters are still set to match the needs of desktops. This is why, even though your mobile website is horribly optimized, your ranking won’t be damaged if your desktop version of the page is satisfactory. This gives one illusion of having done a great job, and at the same time, puzzled at the high mobile user abandonment. Soon, however, Google intends to include mobile page speed into the equation and sort this out once and for all.
A New Algorithm
The only way for these mobile-optimized pages to get this boost is if the new ranking algorithm is applied. This algorithm will evaluate mobile-friendliness in addition to speed. This means image formatting and page layout. Unfortunately, there’s one significant drawback in this algorithm. It will function on a purely yes-or-no basis. In other words, you are either optimized for mobile or not, so there is no middle ground or a degree to which you are mobile-friendly.
On the other hand, from strictly practical standpoint, this presents a great opportunity to a lot of online underdogs. Even though it’s their livelihood, a lot of people online don’t follow these innovations as closely as they should, which usually results in them being unaware of such changes. Because of this, website owners who are aware of pending changes can easily use this knowledge to get ahead of the curve. All they need to do is perform a mobile speed test and, if they don’t like the results, find a way to improve them. This can easily be done either via the optimization of content (images and videos, in particular) or even switching to HTML5.
Improving User Experience
The main reason behind all of this is the fact that Google is trying to further improve their user experience. It is known that people who wait more than 4 seconds on your page are most likely to leave. While some live in illusion that mobile users are somehow more patient than desktop users, this is not the case. The recent infographic by blog.kissmetrics.com showed that only 11% of users actually believe that their mobile browses should be slower than those on desktop. The rest believe that it should be equally fast, if not faster. As one of the most popular rules of retail states, the customer is always right.
Google is constantly changing to meet the needs of its users and those unable or unwilling to adapt will be left behind. This is why it’s important to keep up with the latest developments from the search engine giant. Knowledge really is power, and in this case, may lead to a better ranked website.