Google Mobile Usability Report IDs Website Issues That Drive Away Business

Google has added Mobile Usability reports to its Webmaster Tools, which will provide a detailed report for each error found on a company’s website, the search giant announced today, October 29.

Mobile-friendly websites should be easy for smartphone users to navigate simply by scrolling up and down. So when a user has to swipe all over the place to find content, or if content simply isn’t displaying correctly, that’s a problem that can drive potential customer traffic away from a company’s site to competitors.

Google’s new Mobile Usability report shows the following issues:

  • Flash content
  • Missing viewport
  • Tiny fonts
  • Fixed-width viewports
  • Content not sized to viewport
  • Clickable links-buttons too close to each other

The report also includes instructions on how to fix each error. Once a company fixes an issue, these will be reflected the next time Google crawls the website. Below is a screenshot of sample report provided by Google:

mobile-usability

Why Mobile Usability Is Important

Recent studies have shown that the more mobile-friendly your website is, the more likely it is that users will revisit your site and make a purchase. The hard truth is that if you don’t have a mobile-friendly site to capture your audience, your competition probably will.

friendly-study

Because it is so closely tied to the user experience, Google now considers mobile usability relevant for optimal search results. Google suggests that companies should ensure that mobile content is usable for their visitors in the following ways:

  • Defined viewing that adjusts based on screen size
  • Content that flows in the viewport to avoid having to scroll horizontally or adjust screen to view all content
  • Proper font sizes that scale based on screen size
  • Well-placed buttons that are not crowded by other linked items
  • Design that is driven by mobile technology

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