Ever heard of mobile-first indexing? It’s the term Google uses to describe their transition from primarily desktop-based crawling to mobile, and it’s one of many steps Google is taking to make search a more relevant place for users.
And, odds are, your site might already be on mobile-first indexing – though the blanket rollout is set for sometime in the new year. If you haven’t thought about the changes you might need to make to accommodate for a mobile-first approach, now’s the time.
Google’s Martin Splitt recently clarified some of the biggest challenges that come with mobile-first indexing, and what you can do about them. Here are the highlights:
• Be sure to double check your mobile site for content issues. With mobile-first indexing, Google is using your mobile pages to rank your site, not the desktop version – content issues on the mobile version of your site are more important than ever.
• Content should be identical between mobile and desktop sites. Depending on your site layout, you might find it easier to reformat, rewrite, or cut some of the content from your mobile site – this isn’t a good idea! To deal with mobile-first indexing, your mobile site should have the same content as your desktop site.
• Ensure meta descriptions are added, and keep structured data consistent across mobile and desktop sites. Martin states that meta descriptions on mobile “matter a lot for Googlebot.”
Mobile-first indexing sounds scary, but it’s just another way Google is trying to make search results more relevant for users. In a word: if your site is serving users well on mobile, you’re probably in the clear.
Source: Google Webmasters