Mobile Usability Feature Added to Google Webmaster Tools for Mobile SEO

This October, Google added the new Mobile Usability feature to its Webmaster Tools for online marketers optimizing their websites for mobile users. Mobile optimization is mainly concerned with the mobile usability of your website and this feature shows you the usability issues across your website. Since this feature displays graphs to present the issues identified over time, you can see the progress you have made in that particular period of time.

A Detailed Overview

A mobile-friendly site is not just one that can be read and used easily by scrolling up and down on a smartphone. Instead, the users should be able to swipe the screen left or right to search for content, zoom for reading the text and using the UI (user interface elements), and see the required content properly. If users experience difficulties in these areas, then your site may not be up to the mark. According to the official Google Webmaster blog post, mobile usability reports can show you the following issues:

  • Flash content
  • Missing viewport (a critical meta-tag for mobile pages)
  • Tiny fonts
  • Fixed-width viewports
  • Content not sized to viewport
  • Clickable links/buttons too close to each other

You can see how many pages are affected with each kind of error in numbers and graph (as shown below).

Mobile Usability

This information will help webmasters find effective solutions to fix these issues.

Importance of Mobile Ranking

Improved mobile usability will increase mobile traffic to your site and thereby improve your position in mobile ranking. Let’s see why mobile ranking is important in the current scenario. Definitely, the increasing use of smartphones and other mobile devices raises the importance of mobile ranking. A recent CTR (click through rate) study by seoClarity reveals that mobile rankings are three times more valuable than that of desktop and companies need to optimize their sites for mobile devices. This study, highlighted as the largest and most reliable CTR study ever conducted, tried to provide the most accurate clustering of CTRs by position with desktop and mobile models. In the case of desktop model, the CTR for the first ranking position was 19.3% and that for the second position was 11.4%. But in the case of mobile model, CTR for the first and second positions was 27.7% and 9.20% respectively. This statistics clearly implies why mobile ranking is crucial for a website.

However, businesses may differ according to the industry, business size, country, language, or marketplace and it is very important to analyze the real importance of mobile ranking for your business. SEO experts can provide great support in this regard.

About Rajeev Rajagopal

Rajeev Rajagopal

Rajeev Rajagopal is the Vice President of Managed Outsource Solutions, a leading BPO company in Tulsa, Oklahoma. Prior to joining MOS, he worked as a physical therapist. Having worked in several rehabilitation clinics, Rajeev has learned the importance of good medical records for medical billing and liability issues and the importance of the good back and front office support. He has extensive knowledge in SEO, medical billing and coding, and medical transcription. He has worked with a number of large organizations to effectively manage and provide outsourcing solutions.