Is Responsive Design Important for Google?
Responsive web design is a way of creating a normal website to be compatible with smart phones and tablets. While more and more people are using their mobile phones to navigate on the internet, the demand for mobile-friendly websites increases. So having a website that is easy to use by mobile users has becoming very important.
Google also announced that their algorithm will take in consideration as a ranking factor the compatibility of the websites with mobile devices. If you are into SEO and you followed the recent Google updates, you probably know how much accent they put on the user experience. Having a website that will not display its content on a phone in the way it should be, it is considered a bad user experience.
How do I make my site responsive?
If you are starting a brand new website using a site builder or a content management system, most likely the template you choose will be responsive.
If you already have a website built for example on WordPress or Joomla, you can get a new template that has the mobile-ready features built in and change with your old design. If you want to keep the current design which is not responsive, the process will be longer and if you don’t have knowledge in programming, a developer would be required for the job.
How to check if my website is mobile-friendly?
Having a mobile friendly site will be beneficial not only for your users but also for Google. From April 21, 2015 the new algorithm will take effect and websites missing the responsive feature may get pulled down the ranking list. The search giant provides a tool that you can check with if a website is ready for mobile devices or if there are any issues with it.
So if you want to have a website according to Google standard you should consider using this tool.
There is anything else to do?
There are still many ways to improve your website to provide the best experience for your visitors that are navigating your content via a mobile phone. Having a mobile-ready site will definitely help, but speed is also important. This is why, I recommend using this other tool developed by Google, to check the compatibility and speed of your website with both desktops and mobile phones.
Users tend to leave a website within 3-5 if that does not load; Google also considers website speed as a ranking factor for a while. Optimizing the images and the code, and caching the whole website will considerably speed up the loading time.
I’m pretty sure there are some other factors as well to consider when optimizing a website for mobile, so if you have some great ideas please share with us in the comments below.