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Google’s Mobile-First Index

By piranha

31st January 2017

Late last year, Google announced a new mobile-first index was coming in 2017. When this comes into effect, Google will index mobile sites with greater frequency and give more weight to those with effective mobile search optimisation.

Google’s mobile-first index follows mobile searches overtaking desktop searches for the first time last year. Users now search the internet using their smartphones and tablets more than their computers, so it makes sense that search engines want to accommodate that fact.

What Does This Mean for Your Site?

For unresponsive sites or mobile versions featuring limited content, this change could result in a substantial loss of traffic. Some sites historically ‘watered down’ the content on their mobile version and rather used it to direct traffic to desktop.

Google’s new mobile-first index should only be a problem if your site is unresponsive or if it does use separate content for desktop and mobile versions.

In the past, it was common for websites to have two separate versions online. You might have noticed some mobile site versions with URLs like

However, this is now seen far less frequently. We have known for years that rather than maintaining 2 different sites in this way, Google wants a single site that is rich in content and responsive.

What Makes a Site ‘Responsive’?

Web developers can use code to make websites display in an optimised fashion, regardless of screen size. Responsive sites share the same content and simply display that information so that it’s easy to read on small, medium and large screens.

From a smartphone screen all the way up to a large desktop monitor, responsive sites are easily navigable and readable without unnecessary zooming or scrolling.

Links and buttons must also be easy to use on touchscreens as well as with a mouse.

What Can You Do About it?

Websites can often be converted into responsive versions. If a site is very old, however, a new build may be necessary to make this possible.

There are many advantages to your site working equally well on mobile and desktop. Since the advent of smartphones and tablets, visitor behaviour has considerably changed.

By making your site’s content easy to access across all platforms, you ensure that none of your visitors go elsewhere to buy your products or services.

Piranha Can Help

Whether you’d like to make your existing desktop site responsive or have a new website built for you, Piranha can help.

Our extensive experience and expertise can make your site ready for Google’s mobile-first index. Avoid a potential drop in traffic – get in touch with us today!

Call 01772 888331 or email us at for more information.

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