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Google rolling out Mobile First index

     
12:23 am on Mar 27, 2018 (gmt 0)

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continued from...

Google Mobile First index rolling out slowly/ being tested for some sites
https://www.webmasterworld.com/google/4874369.htm [webmasterworld.com]

also from:
Google Updates and SERP Changes - March 2018
https://www.webmasterworld.com/google/4889357.htm [webmasterworld.com]

and from...
Surge in Redirected requests.... Google finds an old shopping list
https://www.webmasterworld.com/google/4892431.htm [webmasterworld.com]

----

and from today's Google Blog...

Rolling out mobile-first indexing
[webmasters.googleblog.com...]
Monday, March 26, 2018

Today we’re announcing that after a year and a half of careful experimentation and testing, we’ve started migrating sites that follow the best practices [developers.google.com] for mobile-first indexing.
To recap, our crawling, indexing, and ranking systems have typically used the desktop version of a page's content, which may cause issues for mobile searchers when that version is vastly different from the mobile version. Mobile-first indexing means that we'll use the mobile version of the page for indexing and ranking, to better help our - primarily mobile - users find what they're looking for.

[edited by: Robert_Charlton at 3:25 am (utc) on Mar 27, 2018]

8:06 am on Mar 27, 2018 (gmt 0)

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Helps to load fast ideally under 1 sec,

However there are still bots hacking devices with fast connections making slow requests on sites for negative seo and most of them using Chrome and Android

Not sure Chrome or Android understands that the site is not slow just the bots are making slow requests
5:07 pm on Mar 27, 2018 (gmt 0)

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Nice to see the 'best practices' link. So much variation for a back end person to keep abreast of
8:24 pm on Mar 27, 2018 (gmt 0)

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Today we’re announcing that after a year and a half of careful experimentation and testing, we’ve started migrating sites that follow the best practices [developers.google.com] for mobile-first indexing.

So now that the main migration has started, should we begin looking for a big shakeup in the search results? Or will the effect be small?
10:49 pm on Mar 27, 2018 (gmt 0)

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Related: Mobile-First Index [webmasterworld.com]
12:07 pm on Mar 28, 2018 (gmt 0)

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An article published this morning in SE Roundtable that answers some questions that many are having...

Google's Mobile First Indexing Is Unrelated To Weekend Algorithm Update
Mar 28, 2018 - 7:40 am
by Barry Schwartz

[seroundtable.com...]

Barry reports that Google's John Mueller has said that the mobile first indexing rollout was not "at all related to what folks were seeing with this past weekend's Google algorithm update.".

My emphasis added here...
Google is aiming for the search results to not change that much over this mobile-first indexing change. There may be some changes but Google is aiming to not have much change in the search results with this change. Time will tell if this is true.

This should answer aristotle's question regarding the likelihood of "a big shakeup."

My guess is that the results will eventually become somewhat context-related to what kind of device, under what circumstances, might be making certain kinds of queries... and how a site might respond to these... a little bit like a Panda for multi-format / multi-device displays, but that is just a guess.

11:09 am on Mar 29, 2018 (gmt 0)

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I wonder if ads will make a difference?

Show a 300x250 on all screens and you'll see it covers quite a chunk on mobiles, but is fine on desktops.

Perhaps the better ads change that they have made on Chrome, is connected to all of this. Forcing people to use smaller ads on mobiles, which then helps the ranking of those pages (on mobiles). This means more people seeing mobile pages with less 'in your face' advertising and a better overall mobile experience.
7:44 pm on Apr 2, 2018 (gmt 0)

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@steviec79 I am struggling with that question as well. On desktop we have our main content with a vertical bar on the right that contains a picture of the website (which when you click you visit the website) along with some other info below it in the bar. On mobile phones this vertical bar gets moved to center above the main content. It all looks fine but I worry having a 300x250 image taking up the majority of the screen which links back (nofollow) to the website. Reducing the image size would not look right and most people click on the image expecting to take them to the websites home page.
8:34 pm on Apr 2, 2018 (gmt 0)

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Seem to be losing some traffic from the beginning of March on a site that doesn't have a mobile-friendly version, coinciding with the gradual roll-out of the mobile first index. The content is not targeted at mobile users, but presumably the lack of a mobile-friendly experience does feed back into desktop rankings. Or... it's a coincidence.
9:43 pm on Apr 2, 2018 (gmt 0)

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Google's Mobile First Indexing Is Unrelated To Weekend Algorithm Update

Maybe, but we've had a big jump in mobile traffic since Friday. (I commented on this in the April update thread.) Our increase in mobile traffic over the last four days (Friday through Monday) is more than 29 percent, compared to 15 percent for tablet and -7 percent for desktop. Maybe the "mobile-friendly" signal got cranked up?
12:50 pm on Apr 11, 2018 (gmt 0)

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My observations suggest that the switch to mobile-first could be hurting the rankings of very long pages, even those with a responsive design and fast-loading times. Perhaps google believes that a short page is inherently better-suited for mobile users, even if a longer page has higher quality content.
1:08 pm on Apr 11, 2018 (gmt 0)

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My observations suggest that the switch to mobile-first could be hurting the rankings of very long pages, even those with a responsive design and fast-loading times. Perhaps google believes that a short page is inherently better-suited for mobile users, even if a longer page has higher quality content.

That's not how this works.

Google is just using the document served to mobile-like devices. How it scores that document relative to the query remains unchanged.

If you were serving the same document either way, there has been no change with this move.

That's not to say longer pages aren't being hurt (relatively) - just that it is nothing to do with mobile-first.
1:46 pm on Apr 11, 2018 (gmt 0)

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How it scores that document relative to the query remains unchanged.

How do you know that? Unless you have some concrete proof, I'll stick with my logic that adjustments to the algorithm might be desirable to accompany the switch to mobile-first.
4:15 pm on Apr 11, 2018 (gmt 0)

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No proof, so you can assume away.

But you have no proof either, and your reasoning has less basis than mine- Google has made statements as to what Mobile-First is doing (which, unlike most of what Google says, they have no need to misrepresent).

I see no reason for algo adjustments be desirable. However, there have been multiple acknowledged updates around the same time.

As I say, feel free to conflate the two things, but it is not supported by either the evidence, or by Google's abnormally clear statements.
4:32 pm on Apr 11, 2018 (gmt 0)

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I haven't seen any evidence of longer pages taking a hit.
4:41 pm on Apr 11, 2018 (gmt 0)

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Shaddows -- Well you originally made an absolute statement. I asked you for proof. I didn't see any proof in your reply.

In my opinion there could be special factors relating to mobile devices which google might want to adjust its algorithm for.

But you're entitled to your opinion and I'm entitled to mine.
11:37 pm on Apr 11, 2018 (gmt 0)

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I for one am very interested to hear theories from other experienced webmasters, but the moment someone voices their opinion you get someone else bleating like a #*$! parrot "Where's the proof, Where's the proof". Too many people here rubbish other peoples ideas without offering anything themselves IMHO.
9:54 pm on Apr 12, 2018 (gmt 0)

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Mobile traffic is up and becomes more consistent here

A lot of work done on speed in the last 12 month