Ever since Google first announced their Mobile First indexing change, which has the potential to dramatically shake up the search results when it goes live, many SEOs have been speculating about just when it might go live or expand beyond the limited testing.
The Mobile First change would see Google index and rank sites based on the mobile version of the site, a change made to reflect the fact that more than 50% of all searches are done on a mobile device. And with some site owners truncating content or presenting an alternate version of the page, it can be frustrating for those searchers to find the content they were looking for, when the site owner has only made it available on the desktop version of the page. So the change makes a lot of sense since it impacts the searcher’s perception of Google’s search quality in the results.
Gary Illyes spoke at the Friends of Search conference today and he made a few mentions about the upcoming Mobile First change.
"We're still working on a completely mobile first index, We're making moves towards a launch" by @methode #fos17
— Martijn Scheijbeler (@MartijnSch) February 16, 2017
So the million dollar SEO question is precisely when, and Illyes gave us an updated timeline that it will take “a few more months” before it is ready to launch.
Mobile First Index may take a few more months, says @methode on #fos17
— Ruud Kok (@ruudkok) February 16, 2017
He did say there isn’t an exact date though.
Google doesn't have a date yet for the mobile first index #FOS17 @methode
— Aleyda Solís (@aleyda) February 16, 2017
We do know that Google has been testing Mobile First, but they want to make sure that there aren’t any major issues with the indexing change before they release it to all searchers. Links are one issue, as is the fact that some site owners remove important things like schema markup from the mobile version of the page, meaning those sites risk losing their rich snippets if they don’t ensure the markup is on the mobile page.
We have answered many of the questions surrounding mobile first in our Everything SEOs Need to Know About Google’s Mobile First Indexing Change guide.
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