Google mobile first indexing, what's that?
Google mobile first indexing is not something new. Google scans the content of our website's to know what's there on our website. And, when a user is looking for such content, our website can be a potential search result. For many days, Google used to look at the desktop version of our website. But, now the trend is changing. Google has confirmed that more focus is on mobile content.
Why mobile first indexing
Mobile search trend has been increasing. And recently it has been more than desktop. A huge amount of traffic is nowadays on Mobile devices. People want content on the mobile to be quick and perfect. And, Google mobile first indexing is one which shows that mobile content is given a lot of importance.
Google said, mobile version of new websites will be indexed first. Google has been doing mobile indexing for quite some time. You can refer to this url. And, Google aims to roll out mobile-first indexing for all websites by March 2021.
Is your site is already on mobile indexing? Check on Google's Search Console (previous known as Google Webmasters Tool). You need to go inside your property, go to settings and see whether you are being crawled as Google mobile bot or not. Check the below screenshot for further reference.
Also, you should keep a few things in mind for mobile website: https://developers.google.com/search/mobile-sites/mobile-first-indexing
Things to keep in mind
You need to be very serious about your score on Lighthouse: The speed of your page means a lot when it comes to ranking and SEO. Make sure you are able to use the Lighthouse tool available with Google Chrome and get the best possible score. A faster website will always perform well in SEO. (While checking the score of my own blog, I found a silly mistake which had a huge impact on my score. Check the blog post Performance improvement & a silly mistake on my blog and how I fixed them)
Use page speed matrix to improve: On the Search Console, you will find a lot of vital information on which you can work to improve your ranking. And, inside Enhancements > Core web vitals > Mobile you can find a lot of stuff. If there are a lot of areas to improve, then it's best that you start acting on them soon.
Make sure your content is optimised on mobile: Yes, Google is going to index the mobile content. But, they are not going to maintain a different index for desktop and mobile. And, that means you will need to make sure all the content is visible on the mobile version.
Mobile usability issues: A very interesting report which you can find on Google Search Console is usability. And, this can become a very important factor in your site's ranking. The report tells you about problems that user might face when they are on your website. Things like, elements too close to each other. I even had certain pages where the content was beyond the visible area which can have a very bad impact. And, last but not the least overall size of the text and it's impact on readability.
These may seem very obvious, but sometimes these are the small things which make a huge difference for the end user to find something that they are looking for. Google is a company who benefit when a user is able to find something they are looking for quickly. And hence, they focus a lot not only the content of your website but also how easily the user can reach to that content.
And that's why it is very important now to focus on the desktop and the mobile version of your website as well. While writing this article I checked the stats of my website on mobile as well. And, yes I can see a small change in the trend in traffic for my website as well. And, I have already made a list of improvements that I need to do on my website to make it more mobile friendly. Let me know what do you think and what are you planning to make your website mobile friendly.