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Why the Importance of Mobile goes Beyond a Google Algorithm Update

April 27, 2015


From the February pre-announcement to the official April 21st launch, all talk has been around Google’s Mobile-Friendly update. However, the full impact of the update is still yet to be realized for many sites – according to Google, the rollout could take weeks.

There are now more mobile devices than there are people on earth

With more people using mobile to find, view and interact with website information, it makes sense for Google to favor mobile-friendly sites when conducting searches on mobile devices. In 2015, you would expect most – if not all – websites to be responsive to the device that people are accessing them from. Though scarily, a recent study conducted by Portent suggested otherwise, with 10,000 out of 25,000 top sites failing the mobile test.

One small step towards mobile-friendliness

Google’s move towards rewarding mobile-friendly sites in the search engine results is a positive first step in pushing more sites towards creating a better mobile site experience for their users, even if it is in the most basic form – text big enough to read, links far enough apart, content fitted to screen, mobile viewport set…

The fact of the matter is, having a mobile-friendly site goes way beyond a Google algorithm update and the simple ability to see information on a smaller screen. It’s about providing users with the best possible experience wherever, whenever, and however they need to access information, taking into account the context and intent-mindset that person is in.

A bigger mobile disruption

In today’s multi-screen, multi-device, omni-channel environment, the days of linear customer journeys are but a distant memory. The Zero Moment of Truth has progressed towards micro-moments of high intent and high engagement – many of which happen in spare moments, such as waiting in line and commuting. In these “I-want-to-know, I-want-to-go, I-want-to-buy” moments, we reach for our phone. On average, users check their phones 150 times per day. Companies need to be present during these micro-moments even for a chance to be within the consideration set.

The journey often continues either on mobile, desktop, laptop or tablet – most people have 2-3 devices that they move between. Google’s John Venverloh reported that 52% of online customer journeys take over 19 days; and that’s just for consumer purchases. Complex business purchases can take several months, or years.

As digital marketers, understanding our customer’s voice, behavior and idiosyncrasies become even more important as we look to develop real-time experiences built around micro-moments of truth. And when we consider mobile within this context, it becomes part of a much bigger digital strategy and experience. It’s more than just a standalone channel. It is way beyond an algorithm update.

From → Search Marketing

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