What Google’s mobile-first index means

It’s been reported that more searches are now made on mobile devices than desktop PCs, so it’s unsurprising that Google has said it will soon only use what it sees on our websites using the equivalent of a mobile device. Most websites nowadays are ‘responsive’ and show the same content on all devices, so this probably won’t be an issue. But we need to remember that when we take a look at our websites on a mobile phone, that’s also what Google is going to see and use. Indeed, it may well already be doing so. There’s no point in saying: “Well, most of our visitors use desktop PCs” – Google doesn’t care, and will look at our sites however it chooses to. Once the mobile version has become the one being indexed, there’ll be no going back.

Clearly therefore we need to ensure that our mobile sites contain all of the data of our desktop versions, and that they’re just as quick to respond, if not more so. Google has provided a tool to show us what it’s seeing. You may want to give it a try. If you have a separate mobile site (often denoted by having ‘m.’ instead of ‘www.’), you may well need to assure yourself that the full content is being displayed.