With so many people jumping on board the smartphone train, savvy companies are finding new ways to reach out to those who access the Internet via their personal mobile devices. However, not every website is mobile optimized and many websites either load slowly or not at all if you attempt to access them via a smartphone or a mobile device.
While some business owners clearly have some catching up to do, Google hasn’t forgotten about smartphone users and has recently begun testing a new smartphone icon that appears within Google search engine results pages. This smartphone icon is designed to present mobile device and smartphone users with an easy way to determine what content is mobile-friendly so that they can easily access the content.
This new development that is being tested seems quite easy and user-friendly, so it may turn out to be the best change that Google has made with mobile optimization in mind. The way it works is simple: a user navigates to Google using their smartphone and then enters a query into the Google search box. The results for the search are generated just as they always have been, with ten results appearing on the page along with relevant advertisements. As the smartphone user scrolls down the list of search results, a smartphone icon shall appear alongside the URL field for any result that links to mobile content.
Here is an example:
If Google elects to keep this new feature as a permanent addition to the Google mobile experience it is likely that more webmasters will begin to see the importance of having a mobile optimized website. Right now it is quite normal to expect a business to have a webpage, but a vast number of businesses simply have not caught up to the mobile revolution by mobilizing their content. Google has been encouraging webmasters to take the steps to create content designed specifically for mobile users, including their website HowToGoMo.com which launched in November of 2011.
According to Google’s Mobile Ads team, only 39% of users who visit a website that is not optimized for mobile browsing will ever return to that website again.
The bottom line is that this development has made it even more important for websites to create smartphone-optimized pages and content. Once a company takes the plunge and creates mobile optimized content, Google will reward them by helping to increase their visibility. It truly is a win-win situation for all involved.