Mobile First Indexing

In a recent move, Google has officially announced the roll out of mobile first indexing. Though Google has been actually working in these lines for quite some time even before this announcement, this official announcement comes as the leading Search Engine’s acknowledgement of its stand via its own channels. Much earlier to this announcement, Google’s representatives have revealed that several sites have been migrated already to mobile-first indexing.

By way of confirming what we have already known in these lines, Google has not reiterated the fact that it is migrating the individual sites that have ably followed the best practices acknowledged by Google for mobile-first indexing. As per the rule, sites that make use of responsive web design or dynamic serving are the most suitable candidates for mobile-first indexing. If a given site has an AMP and a non-AMP version of the content, Google will make it a point to index the mobile versions of the non AMP page.

Understand what is mobile-fist indexing
Down the ages, one of the biggest concerns for Google is ensuring a great user experience. As part of its mission to ensure the best user experience for searches performed across all devices, Google is resorting to the measure of mobile-first indexing which will mean to us that Googlebot is now completely configured to crawl and index the mobile version of a page only.

Studies show that these days more searches are happening on mobile devices than on desktops. Google wants to ensure that a majority of the users will come across a content that is optimized for their user interface. In case a site lacks a mobile-friendly version of it, Google will overlook this fact and crawl and index the site in its existing form.

To make this initiative clearer, we can say that Google is not going to have a separate ‘mobile-first index’ that will run parallel to the other main index. All the content will be live within one single index only. However, henceforth Google will be making use of the mobile versions if they are made available by the site owners.

Google’s mobile-first indexing measures will not affect the site rankings
As part of its announcement, Google has made it clear to the site owners that the popular search engine’s mobile-first indexing efforts will never impact the site rankings in any way. However, there has been a significant change in Google’s approach to gathering content for its index.

The measures of Google need not alarm the site owners who do not have a mobile version of the site. The idea to understand here is that those sites that are migrated to mobile-first indexing will never enjoy any advantage over the other sites that have not been migrated so far.

Nevertheless, mobile-friendly content will secure higher rankings in the search results when the searches are performed on mobile devices. In fact, this policy has been adopted by Google way back from 2015.

Google’s notification to site owners
Sites that are migrated by the search engine giant to mobile-first indexing are being notified through Search Console. Also, the site owners can henceforth see a dramatic increase in the crawl rates from the smartphone Googlebot.