The following are three key stats that I have lifted from Google’s promotional materials that clearly illustrate the importance of mobile optimization:
Because more people search on mobile than on computers, mobile generates more page views. If your site is not mobile-friendly, users are less likely to stick around. And if your site is slow, they may not even wait for the page to load.
Add in the unreliability of mobile data networks here and your site has to be a mean, lean mobile-friendly machine, or you may not even get a shot at that customer.
The absolute nail in the coffin for a desktop-first approach to websites and search is the mobile-first index. Adopting this philosophy makes sense as more searches happen on mobile than desktop. Yet, at the moment, ranking is still primarily based on the desktop version of a site.
When this happens, the content and links of your mobile site, along with any other factors — speed, user experience and so on — will be the key drivers of your search engine visibility. Desktop will likely still be a factor, but it will be in a secondary capacity. Mobile first.
The writing’s on the wall here, folks — mobile has been important for a good while now, but 2017 is the year that it will become the key factor in your quest for improved rankings and conversion rates from site visitors.
The good news is that this represents a chance for those who really put in the work to develop an advantage over their competition. It will take work, but climbing over this obstacle is the way forward, and doing so before your rivals will put your site in better stead.