A big milestone in Google’s mobile-first indexing was reached this week as webmasters began to receive notifications via Search Console that their sites had been enabled for mobile-first indexing.
This is what the notification looks like:
The message specifies the domain name of the site and explains that Googlebot will now use the mobile version of the site for indexing and ranking, rather than the desktop version.
“This means that you may see more traffic in your logs from Googlebot Smartphone. You may also see that snippets in Google Search results are now generated from the mobile version of your content.
Background: Mobile-first indexing means that Googlebot will now use the mobile version of your site for indexing and ranking, to better help our (primarily mobile) users find what they’re looking for. Google’s crawling, indexing, and ranking systems have historically used the desktop version of your site’s content, which can cause issues for mobile searchers when the desktop version differs from the mobile version. Our analysis indicates that the mobile and desktop versions of your site are comparable.”
Google announced mobile-first indexing back in 2016, and in March this year confirmed that the rollout was beginning, to switch sites across. It said sites which followed best practices for mobile-first indexing would be the first to be migrated.
Google has been encouraging users to prepare for mobile first indexing and has a number of free testing tools to check, for example, your page speeds and how mobile friendly your website is. Responsive design and creating a compelling user experience for mobile users are also key elements to getting your website in shape for mobile.