B2B Marketing Agency for Technology Companies

The Most Common Misunderstanding of “Mobilegeddon”

On February 26, Google announced that mobile-friendliness will be a ranking factor. But, what does that mean? Here’s what people miss about “Mobilegeddon”.

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by Eric Sharp

On February 26, 2015, Google announced something big.

The announcement impacted every website interested in and reliant on obtaining search engine rankings and driving organic, non—paid traffic.

Mobilegeddon Common Misunderstanding

Their Webmaster Blog post stated that on April 21, 2015, they would be “…expanding their use of mobile-friendliness as a ranking signal.

In other words, if your website isn’t mobile-friendly, your website would be in trouble.

But, just how much trouble? What did that announcement really mean?

Mobile-Friendly Label in Google SERP

After talking with my clients and prospects leading up to “Mobilegeddon” (aka “Mobilepocalypse”), I realized many had no idea what would happen after April 21st.

  • “Will our website disappear from Google?”
  • “Will we lose all our rankings?”
  • “Is the end of the world near??” (I actually didn’t get this question, but I certainly sensed fear!)

Now that Mobilegeddon has come and gone, what can websites expect?

Though Google attempted to answer people’s urgent (and sometimes panicky) questions in their forum, many business owners and marketers remain confused over the impact of this major change in Google’s algorithm.

The one significant detail people miss about Mobilegeddon

Though there are only a couple critical factors to Mobilegeddon, here’s what some people miss:

Mobilegeddon only impacts your mobile rankings and traffic.

When someone Google’s a keyword from their desktop (which includes laptops) or tablet, the algorithm won’t factor in whether websites have passed their Mobile-friendly Test. Google will continue to show relevant websites regardless of mobile-friendliness.

Mobilegeddon only impacts smartphones. It doesn’t affect tablet rankings or desktop — which means it might only be impacting a sliver of your overall traffic.

Google Webmasters Twitter verifying that tablets aren’t affected:

If a website’s mobile traffic is only, let’s say 5% — the ramifications might be subtle. But, if that number is significantly more, Mobilegeddon might be devastating to organic traffic, leads and sales.

By no means is this an industry benchmark, but if your mobile traffic exceeds 15 to 20%, and you’re not mobile-friendly, I’d start budgeting for it today.


17% of this website’s traffic comes from smartphones, which means only 17% of its OVERALL traffic is being impacted by Mobilegeddon

Remember, mobile-friendliness is URL-specific

As Steve Jobs made famous, there’s “One more thing.”

Mobilegeddon is URL specific. If your homepage is mobile-friendly, your homepage won’t be impacted. If the rest of your site isn’t mobile-friendly, the rest of your site is affected.

You might like:

The Good News if you’re not Mobile-friendly

Unlike past algorithm changes, Mobilegeddon allows you to fix things and get back “in good graces” with Google fairly quickly. If you roll up your sleeves and take care of business soon, their throttling of your mobile rankings will reconcile.

How quickly? I haven’t found any reliable data for that, but I have seen as soon as a few weeks.

Not sure where to start? Begin with their Mobile-Friendly test and see if your website passes.

We believe a conversion-focused website — paired with the proper traffic, content, automation, and end-to-end ROI measurement — equips B2B technology companies with a real asset to scale their business.


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