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Google now rewards mobile-friendly sites

Posted by Malcolm Iliff, on 17th May 2015

Google has announced that it has enhanced its algorithms for search engine rankings by giving websites that are built using responsive design a boost.  Responsive designs will be prioritised. What does this mean for sites that are not mobile friendly?  Indeed, what is responsive design?  Does it really matter?  Is your current site going to be disadvantaged?

Responsive Design and SEO

SEO - search engine optimisation - is absolutely key to a site that relies on visitors finding the site by keywords typed into a search engine. If your site does not appear on page 1 of the results, your chances of visitors landing on your site are very greatly reduced.  We have written elsewhere about the many factors that can contribute to gaining higher rank, but now Google has decided that they will positively enhance the rankings on a page by page basis for sites that are built using responsive design techniques.  Guess what! That means, like it or not, sites that do not use responsive design are going to be pushed down the rankings.  

Should you up-grade to responsive design?

So the question needs to be posed - should I upgrade my website to make it fully responsive?  Indeed, if I am developing a brand new site, should I spend the extra that is required to make my site responsive rather than go for the conventional fixed width site?  Our recommendation is strongly in the direction of making your site responsive.  In essence, a responsive site is one that is mobile device friendly.  Rather than having to use your fingers to ‘expand’ the image on the mobile device in order to read the words or click the hyperlink in the navigation, the site is built to make the whole of a site readable, whatever device is being used and in whatever orientation - landscape or portrait. With responsive there should be no more left-right scrolling required to read the whole of a line of text.  The design will have been adjusted to ensure the visitor experience is the best it can be for whatever device your visitor is using.  After all, once you have a visitor directed to your selected page, the last thing you want is for them to leave the site simply because it is so difficult to read.  This applies to informational/brochure sites as well as to e-commerce sites where, without responsive design the checkout, for example, can be a real problem.   Yes, responsive is more expensive than a static site - but do consider what you want your site to achieve. If are considering your site as an investment rather than an expense, then you are on the right track to appreciating the value of responsive design and achieving an even better ROI.   

The advantages

This may be the opportunity to update your site, make it more user friendly, make it easier to navigate make it more professional, make it more of a sales aid or a lead generator. Do not underestimate the value of a site that really works for you.     If you need further professional and unbiased advice then contact us here at CBJ Digital.  We really want to improve your business by supporting you with the best marketing tools.  

How can we help?

If you’d like CBJ Digital Ltd to provide a no-obligation review of your website or you’d like us to work with you on addressing the areas for improvement, please contact questions_answered@cbjdigital.com or visit http://www.cbjdigital.com.


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