On April 21st 2015, changes to the Google algorithm significantly impacted the search and site traffic directed to your website, depending on it’s “mobile-friendliness”.
In the announcement on their Webmaster Central Blog, Google explains:
“As more people use mobile devices to access the internet, our algorithms have to adapt to these usage patterns. This change will affect mobile searches in all languages worldwide and will have a significant impact in our search results. Consequently, users will find it easier to get relevant, high quality search results that are optimized for their devices.”
What does this mean for hospitality businesses?
In basic terms: if one of the 2.1 billion people using a mobile devices were to search (anywhere in the world) for a restaurant, hotel, hostel or bar, the top results will be websites optimised for mobile devices.
In busy towns and cities this is fantastic news for consumers who are bombarded with choice and want to make decisions quickly.
The Next Web currently estimates that 60% of all searches have been on a mobile device in 2015; approximately double that of the previous year.
Is it possible to check if your website is mobile-friendly?
The lovely people at Google have made it very easy, with their Mobile-Friendly Test that checks websites, apps and landing pages for mobile optimisation. If your website is up to scratch you will receive this response:
Otherwise you get a message like this:
What’s the best solution?
Over 85% of new customer’s booking intentions are influenced by their first experience of a website; so there is no doubt that the changes are going to have a massive impact on the hospitality industry.
If you don’t have a mobile friendly website the best solution is responsive website design. This means a website is designed to provide an optimal viewing experience (for the user) across the range of mobile devices.
Who you gonna call?
At Ignite Hospitality Marketing, all of our client’s websites are built responsively. In fact, we use a ‘mobile first’ approach to ensure that all of our website designs are seamlessly optimised for a mobile-friendly experience, as described in an earlier blog here.
To learn more about our approach to responsive website design or any of our other services, please get in touch.