Google’s Mobilegeddon Strikes Mobile-Unfriendly Web Sites

Fears that the latest update to GoogleEUs page ranking algorithm would have a negative affect on enterprise sites have largely been confirmed, according to a new report by Adobe. The EUAdobe Digital Index -- Q2 2015 Digital Advertising and Social Media Intelligence Report,EU looked at consumer activity on branded sites from Q2 2014 to Q2 2015.

GoogleEUs so-called EUMobilegeddonEU took place on April 21 of this year, when the search company began giving preference to sites it deemed to be mobile-friendly in its organic search results. Since that time, organic traffic to sites with low mobile engagement has fallen by as much as 10 percent, according to Adobe.

Pay More, Get Less

The loss of organic traffic has driven enterprises to bid up the cost of paid mobile search, with the cost-per-click rising 16 percent year over year, while the click-through-rate (CTR) fell nine percent over the same period. In other words, enterprises are paying more for less traffic.

Nevertheless, Google seems to have had good reason to prioritize the importance of mobile-friendly sites. The amount of Web traffic from mobile devices is expected to surpass traffic from desktops and laptops for the first time within the next 18 months.

On the other hand, mobile traffic is much less lucrative for enterprise sites. The Adobe study found that mobile visitors do significantly less site browsing than desktop visitors. Mobile visitors also generate far less revenue per visit than desktop visitors.

Optimizing a site for mobile browsing can help close the gap, but incremental changes to site design will not achieve enough on its own to reach parity between mobile and desktop visitors, according to the report. Instead, enterprises will need to find ways to incorporate other technologies, such as the Internet of Things, near field communication, and beacons to meaningfully...

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