Another day, another algorithm change.
Google announced late February their plan to expand use of mobile-friendliness as a ranking signal starting April 21. This means that those without a mobile-friendly website would rank lower in search results compared to those with a mobile-optimized site.
The search engine’s decision to optimize search rankings for mobile-friendly sites makes sense given such staggering mobile website statistics as “67% of consumers think mobile-optimized websites run faster,” and “27% of consumers will leave your site if it is not mobile-friendly.”
For those unsure if they will be affected by the new mobile-friendly algorithm change, Google offers a free mobile-friendly test. The test crawls your website, checks for mobile-friendly features (large text, appropriately-spaced links, visible navigation, etc.) and provides a final report on whether your site is mobile-optimized.
Below are results of Google’s mobile-friendly test for two funeral home websites. The one on the left is mobile-friendly and therefore will not be affected by Google’s new algorithm change. The one on the right, however, is not optimized for mobile devices and will be given poorer search rankings when compared to its mobile-friendly counterparts.
If Google determines your website is not mobile-friendly, you are not alone. This new change has left many funeral homes unsure of their options for compliance. Optimizing a site for mobile devices can be a time-consuming and oftentimes expensive process that involves the assistance of a web development expert. But even more costly is dropping in ranking because your site is not optimized. In fact, Moz found that click-through rates fall from 30% to less than 5% when a site is listed beyond the first page of Google search results. This means fewer clicks and less business for your funeral home.
How to respond to this change
Luckily, your funeral home has time to play by Google’s new mobile-friendly rules by the time changes are put into place on April 21, 2015.
To begin, research providers that build fully-responsive funeral home websites optimized for both desktop and mobile devices. Frazer Consultants websites, for example, can be built within 2-4 weeks leaving time to comply with Google’s algorithm change and come standard with search engine optimization (SEO) features built-in.
Then, once your new, mobile-ready website is built, run your site through Google’s mobile-ready test once more to ensure you won’t be affected.
Continue monitoring your site after the changes have been put into place, taking note of your search ranking over time for certain keywords. You may even notice your position rises as Google pushes your competitors without mobile-friendly websites further down the list.