In a rare move from Google, the company recently offered some insight into how their new mobile-first index will help to prepare users for the new system. Google added a new blog post to their famous webmaster blog. Unlike many of Google’s changes and updates, they took this step to offer insight likely because of the severity of the change.
Though the full index hasn’t been fully rolled out, they admitted they have started the roll out on a selective amount of websites. Google itself is observing and testing the new index on these specific websites in order to offer more information into how this index will affect other websites when it is fully launched.
Many SEO experts and business owners have been concerned about this process because they are not sure when exactly their websites will be affected. However, Google has announced that you will be able to tell when it has been moved over by checking to see if a significant increase in crawling rates by Smartphone Googlebot. It is very unlikely that your website has been affected yet but they also advise you to keep an eye on your crawl rates so you will notice when the transformation has been made. Gary Illyes has also posted the following tips to get ready for the mobile-first index:
- Ensure your website is mobile-friendly including text and images.
- Make sure structured data is inline.
- If you have different mobile and desktop sites, be sure your internal links are not sending users to the wrong version of the site.
- Double check to make sure the servers hosting the site have the capabilities to handle the increase in crawl rates.