Manuel Morote

Manuel Morote

Head of SEO & Social Media
Related topics: Performance

Mobile First Index: What is it and how does it affect your website?

2 July 2018
Mobile First Index: What is it and how does it affect your website?
More than 50% of searches on Google come from mobile devices, so Google has decided to adapt its strategy to this trend, because if the search engine focuses on mobile websites Google Search can offer its users the best answer for your questions . This raises some questions for SEO and keyword positioning, which always had reference to desktop positioning. Now they begin to change the rules of the game and mobile positioning begins to be a priority. For this reason, Google announced the publication of its new method of indexing and classifying its organic results: Mobile First Index. This is the last step of many others that the search engine has given to adapt to the importance of the mobile device on the Internet. Although its rollout will be progressive, this change puts the focus 100% on mobile strategies, so your website will have to be 100% adapted for mobile devices.

    1. What is Mobile First Index? As we said, basically Google will index and classify the mobile content version first instead of prioritizing the desktop version, as it did up to the present time.Even so, a single index will be maintained, only by focusing on mobile.
    2. How to know if Google is classifying me with Mobile First Index? Although Google has announced that the owners of the sites will receive a message through Search Console, we can verify this point by analyzing the server logs from the Googlebot crawler.Anuncio Mobile First Index de Search Console
    3. What factors are important in a Mobile First Index? Google has always put a lot of emphasis on the usability of the sites for the desktop and mobile versions. In addition, Google has confirmed through it’s Twitter account that both hamburger menus and accordion style menus are not harmful for positioning.Another important point will be the loading speed, which since July will become an official factor of positioning in the organic results independently of the Mobile First Index.
    4. What happens if I have a specific version for mobile devices?In principle, it will not at all affect your positioning, but the version that will index will be your mobile version, so you will have to evaluate if that version is well optimized at the content level.

And now … What do I have to do to avoid being negatively affected by Mobile First Index? Once you have resolved some of the most common doubts regarding Mobile First Index, will have to evaluate, depending on each case, different actions:

  • If your website is responsive: confirm if the content that you show on mobile devices is the content you want Google to evaluate for the the mobile domain.
  • If you have a website with independent URLs: verify that the indexing settings are correct as indicated by Google in its recommendations.
  • If your website is dynamic serving or an independent mobile site: verify that the content, micro-formats and metadata that you show on desktop and mobile are correct.
  • Verify that your robots.txt file is well configured in both versions to avoid indexing problems.