Google: Here Is Why The Mobile Friendly Algorithm Didn't Feel That Big

May 8, 2015 - 8:13 am 27 by

armageddonFor many, the Google mobile friendly algorithm was a let down. It is fully rolled out but many still don't see any significant impact, nothing at the scale of Panda or Penguin from the SEO/webmaster point of view.

Google's John Mueller was asked this by a webmaster (I think wearing a bathrobe) this morning at the 12:20 minute mark. The question was basically;

What is going on with this mobile update? Basically, why hasn’t there been as much of an impact as Google or the industry has lead off. It didn’t have that much of an impact. Why?

John answered that in two fold, one being that it was a very wide change and that for some niche queries, you wouldn't see the impact because they are already mobile friendly and second being that more sites went mobile friendly than Google expected.

Here is the first part of the transcript of John's answer:

So you would have liked it to be more visible?

So it has rolled out…

I think one of the difficulties here is that it is a very broad change. So while it’s had a fairly big impact across all the search results, it doesn’t mean that in every search result you will see very big changes. So that is something that affects a lot of different sites, a lot of different queries, but it is not such that the sites disappear from the search results completely if they are not mobile friendly.

On the one hand, that makes a lot of sense for the sites that aren’t able to go mobile friendly yet, maybe like small businesses who don’t have the time or the money to set their sites for that. These are results that are still fairly relevant in the search results, so we need to keep them in there some how.

The other aspect that we noticed is that a lot of sites really moved forward on going mobile. So where we expected essentially a little bit of a bigger change, because of maybe bigger sites that weren’t mobile friendly, did take the time to go mobile friendly and with that, they didn’t see that much of a change.

John then went on to explain he/Google was surprised by the number of sites that did go mobile friendly and that over time it might make sense to dial up the mobile friendly algorithm more. Include more things like speed and interstitials, and maybe more things. The second part echos what Gary Illyes said the other day.

Here is the video, worth a watch:

Forum discussion at Google+.


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