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Google Mobile SERPs Update in May Increasing the Effect of Mobile Ranking Signal

     
5:37 pm on Mar 16, 2016 (gmt 0)

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Stand by for mobile SERPs update in May.
Google has said it'll be updating the mobile search results in May 2016 increasing the effect of the ranking signal of mobile friendly sites.

It continues on to say that a highly relevant site could still rank equally well even if it's not a mobile friendly site.

[webmasters.googleblog.com...]

I've been monitoring the mobile SERPs a little more closely these days and, for me, they are different to desktop and tablet SERPs.

What's your experience of the mobile SERPs?
8:32 am on Mar 17, 2016 (gmt 0)

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I haven't checked recently until today. It does now seem that the mobile results are different.

The mobile site checker does still show a different page view compared to that which appears on my smartphone - a reasonably standard and uncomplicated HTC.

Given that speed seems to be such an issue with G as far as mobiles are concerned, it would be nice to see on the report how long the page is estimated to take for download. They must have that information but I suppose showing it might undermine AMP.
9:05 am on Mar 17, 2016 (gmt 0)

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What's your experience of the mobile SERPs?
I'm sure I'm in the minority but the only searching I do on mobile is in the map. I've very little use for searching google on my iphone and I've got no use for mobile visitors on my sites. In fact, I wish there was a tag we could use to keep our sites out of the mobile serps.
2:51 pm on Mar 17, 2016 (gmt 0)

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Up to 85% of my combined traffic is mobile on my own sites, so as far as I'm concerned, bring it.
3:05 pm on Mar 17, 2016 (gmt 0)

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Does not matter if the traffic Google sends does not convert. Lately, no Google traffic is converting.
5:05 pm on Mar 17, 2016 (gmt 0)

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And don't forget to start watching out for the new Googlebot smartphone user-agent starting from April 18, 2016 [webmasterworld.com...]
5:15 pm on Mar 17, 2016 (gmt 0)

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In related news, Google will be changing Googlebot's smartphone user agent from iPhone to Android on April 18.

[theguardian.com...]

The user agent will change from an iPhone running IOS 8.3 to a Nexus 5X running Android 6.0.1.

The Guardian article states: "Google reckons that the change will have no effect on 99% of the sites out there in the immediate future and the majority of search experts agree."

But: "The Googlebot user-agent change could indicate that Google has decided that the new [screen size] standard for the mobile web should be 5in or larger" (which would imply a new definition of "mobile-friendly").
11:45 pm on Mar 17, 2016 (gmt 0)

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What defines a site as mobile friendly? Is it only for Amp sites or does it count sites that use CSS or Bootstrap responsive features.?
11:48 pm on Mar 17, 2016 (gmt 0)

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What defines a site as mobile friendly?


Assuming this doesn't change in May, it's an on/off thing. if you see "mobile friendly" listed in your mobile results, you're mobile friendly. It's basically a check for display techniques for smaller screens, and CSS/bootstrap/responsive will all work if they are adjusting to viewport size. Google's mobile friendly test is another way to check, or you can look in the Google search console.
9:30 pm on Mar 19, 2016 (gmt 0)

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It looks to me as if some mobile browsers may not provide referer information to the server, at least in some cases. One possible result is that some of a site's mobile traffic is being reported as "no referer" when it's actually coming from google, bing, and other search engines. If so, your stats for the percentage of mobile traffic from google, etc, could be inaccurate, and you're actually getting more than you realize.
 

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