Slow off the mobile mark? Google’s cracking down…

Whilst our previous blog “Mobile Recruiting: It’s not just the technology… “, outlined the importance of ensuring your mobile candidate experience helped rather than hindered the modern job hunter, a recent update to
Google’s search algorithm has now made this adaptation compulsory to those who don’t want to significantly loose traffic.

This change will have a major impact on companies whose recruiting efforts have not been focused on their mobile presence as it works to ‘demote web pages in the organic search results that are not built with a responsive mobile web design.’ Google have actively taken steps to encourage website owners to improve their mobile sites as, in their own words;

“Smartphone users are a significant and fast growing segment of Internet users, and at Google we want them to experience the full richness of the web…To improve the search experience for smartphone users and address their pain points, we plan to roll out several ranking changes in the near future that address sites that are misconfigured for smartphone users.”

What does this mean for recruiters?

If your organisations website and recruitment pages are already optimised for mobile then this new update will only serve to benefit those efforts, improving the web pages mobile search ranking over those that have not been fully optimised. However, for those who are yet to move over to mobile, or have sites that are only partially optimised, these pages will start ranking lower, and may even be removed, from Google’s mobile search results.

In a mobile risk assessment of Fortune 100 companies undertaken by Pure Oxygen Labs, a mobile consulting and technology company, it was found that :

  • 2/3 risk ranking downgrades in Google for not serving mobile versions of indexed pages.
  • 1/3 serve some mobile content, but only 6% fully comply with Google's requirements.
  • Only 56% serve any mobile formatted content to smartphone searchers.

As the Founder and CEO of Pure Oxygen Labs, Brian Klais, states,

“It’s unclear just how strict Google will be with regard to compliance… For merchants preparing for the holiday season, the urgency to act is right now as a non-trivial amount of revenue could be at stake. Google could effectively put everyone on notice to take mobile seriously.”

This is, of course, also the case for recruiters as the lower a page is ranked, the lower the probability that talent will be able to actively seek out a company’s vacancies. The quality of a web pages mobile experience will no longer just affect a potential candidate’s interaction with the company but also the company’s ability to interact with potential candidates.

For help on how to eliminate two of the most common mistakes with mobile, check out this handy Google blog post. For further guidance on how to build a fully optimised site take a look at Google’s advice on how to build mobile-optimised websites.

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