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Google Suggests Moving From m-dot to Responsive Before its Mobile First Index Switch

     
4:39 pm on Jun 22, 2017 (gmt 0)

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Google's John Mueller has recommended people migrating from m-dot to responsive in advance of Google's move to Mobile First Index. Although, of course, the mobile first index is going to be a little while yet before we see it, and I heard it's not going to be a sudden switch-over. No doubt Google will be testing the index for a while yet.



Are there many sites still using m-dot?
8:54 pm on June 22, 2017 (gmt 0)

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Are there many sites still using m-dot?


There must be because several Googlers have recently stated that one reason for phasing in mobile first results while keeping some desktop inputs is the lack of back links compared to desktop.
9:05 pm on June 22, 2017 (gmt 0)

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I've just done this but I thought AMP was all the rage now?
7:48 am on June 23, 2017 (gmt 0)

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>AMP was all the rage now?
It depends who you talk to.
AMP is meant to be a really cut down page with very low overhead.
I don't want a cut down site, I want the full site.
8:15 am on June 23, 2017 (gmt 0)

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I have had a brand new site designed, it's slick, it's fast and it looks good. I logged into Adsense and it was recommended I use AMP. So I installed it. I then noticed that my pages were staying on Google and not my site. There were no ads (my living is income from ads, so I need them to show). I realise you can install them, but it looked like a bit of faffing about.

What really put me off was an article I read about how Google roll these things out, we all jump through hoops and then Google decide to abandon the project. That is what scares me.
10:28 am on June 23, 2017 (gmt 0)

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This was one time where lagging behind paid off. When the first big buzz about mobile was building steam, I was on the road traveling for most of the year while many were launching m-dot versions of their sites.

When I did get around to addressing mobile, the new buzz was all about responsive, which I ended up doing.

AMP, while useful for many applications, is simply not relevant for the majority of sites.

Now with HTTP/2 implementation, things will get faster for most everything, even faster for mobile devices supporting 5g.
4:01 pm on June 23, 2017 (gmt 0)

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I'm ready for the next wave of gross, design free, thumbnail logo in top left corner website changeovers. Great opportunity for those who care about eye pleasing design that can work for desktop and mobile.
5:12 pm on June 23, 2017 (gmt 0)

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AMP, while useful for many applications, is simply not relevant for the majority of sites.

I think the issue with AMP is that most people do not understand what it is for. When integrated correctly, it should be a powerful feature for any site. Note that the benefits of AMP are only felt on the first page load, after that point once the user clicks on to another page, much of the speed improvements are gone.

The goal for Google as I see it, was to create platform that would allow users to seamlessly move back and forth between web content and search results. Click on a news article read it, go back to Google go to the next article and so on. It is almost a sort of preview feature, because the user never actually gets any data from the website's server, the first click is drawn from Google's cache. If you build compelling, interactive content then you can draw the user in but otherwise it is unlikely that the user go past that first page.

Google seems to have put a lot of effort to ensure that AMP can be integrated with PWA, and in my view this goes to compelling interactive content. This will allow apps to serve content in the search results. Users can then find app content and the begin interacting with it from the search results. This draws users out of the app only ecosystem of mobile. The more app content they can find the more compelled they will be to use search, for apps and web (sell more ads to app users). And this is of course beneficial for app designers as it will be easier for their apps to be found. If a users stays in the FB walled garden, only FB content will be found.

As for advertising with AMP, you can show AdSense ads just like on any other page. But there is one caveat, (discussed in the Adsense video posted by FrankLeeCeo earlier this week), that is that given the speed with which the content is loaded, it happens that the users scrolls past or bounces before any ads are loaded. If in the past you had a mobile page that loaded slowly, and showed the ads ahead of the content, the user probably saw the ad waited to see the content and then bounced, with a round trip in the tens of seconds. Using the same content on amp, the user immediately sees the content and jumps back in a second or two. No ad view, no interaction, nothing, but the user leaves satisfied that they didn't waste more time and band width. So once again, the content has to be great, or you will be left with nothing.
6:59 pm on June 23, 2017 (gmt 0)

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Where has Google laid out their recommendations for the best way to implement the migration from m-dot to responsive?
12:10 am on June 24, 2017 (gmt 0)

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Where has Google laid out their recommendations for the best way to implement the migration from m-dot to responsive?


It's called a 301 redirect.
12:21 am on June 24, 2017 (gmt 0)

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Yes seoskunk, we use 301. You missed the point. I asked where *Google* has published specific information for *migrating from m-dot to responsive.*

Since there was a Google announcement to do so, there is usually a Google support page explaining the best standard for implementation. This is helpful for those who are new.
8:45 am on June 24, 2017 (gmt 0)

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Listening to the exact words GI uses in that interview, he does not push migrating from m-dot to responsive.

What he says is that if you are planning such a move in the short to medium term, do it before the mobile SERPS comes out - whenever that is.

The reason he gives is that such a move will be more risky after the mobile SERPS compared to before it.

He seems to be silent about the pros and cons of m-dot sites in the planned mobile SERPS.
9:02 am on June 24, 2017 (gmt 0)

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...do it before the mobile SERPS comes out
The mobile SERP is and has been out.

AFAIK we're talking about the upcoming *mobile-first* index when mobile has more influence than desktop for overall ranking.
2:18 pm on June 24, 2017 (gmt 0)

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@nomis5
Listening to the exact words GI uses

That is John Muller, so "the exact words JM uses"

Your are right, in this case the comments are completely agnostic in terms of m. vs responsive. But at many other times JM has been a vocal proponent of responsive. Yet, he is always clear that choosing responsive vs. m. should not make any direct difference in terms of ranking. But this may change when the shift to the mobile index occurs.
4:36 pm on June 24, 2017 (gmt 0)

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Google does seem to favour responsive over m.. and this has been the impression their representatives have given over time on numerous occasions.

On this page: [developers.google.com...] it says: "Responsive design is Google’s recommended design pattern."

Although confusingly a couple of lines after it also says: "Google does not favor any particular URL format as long as the page(s) and all page assets are accessible to all Googlebot user-agents."
7:38 pm on June 24, 2017 (gmt 0)

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Although confusingly a couple of lines after it also says: "Google does not favor any particular URL format as long as the page(s) and all page assets are accessible to all Googlebot user-agents."

"Preferring" and "recommending" are two different things. One obvious reason for Google's recommending responsive pages over separate URLs or dynamic serving is that, once a site owner gets a responsive layout in place, there are fewer opportunities for that site owner to screw things up (e.g., by failing to link correctly between every desktop page and every mobile page--and vice versa--or by setting things up incorrectly for dynamic serving).

Greater simplicity = fewer errors = happier campers all around.
 

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