Do you often visit Google on your iPhone to search for your favorite topic or daily news? Then you would be well aware that many websites don’t offer mobile friendly experience. Not anymore, if you compare the search results of these travel portals, you will instantly know what I am talking about.
Yes, I am talking about Google mobile friendly tag. While Tripadvisor and Kayak have the tag, Expedia don’t. It simply means the websites with the tag are optimized for a mobile device.
If you’re in same shoes as Expedia, then I hope you would have been already working hard to grab the tag before April 21, the date that Google has chosen for the roll-out of a major update to its mobile search algorithm, “Mobile-Friendly Ranking Algorithm”.
Also, chances are that you have already made the changes to your website necessary for the tag but still not visible in your website’s search results.
Google not updating your website’s index is nothing new. The major reason Google doesn’t update its index for a particular website is this that the website is not updated frequently. If your site is like this only for last couple of years, there is no sense for Google Crawlers to visit it.
This is not a good news for such sites. If they are still updating their website, there are fair chances that they’ll miss the deadline and lose the rankings, consequently.
That doesn’t mean you have to sit with hand on your forehead. A few tricks can come handy in such situations. The best one is to force the crawlers to Re-index your website. Three ways you can make the crawler to index your website forcefully:
- The Fetch as Google function in Google Webmaster Tools:
In the website’s webmaster Tools main window, go to Crawl Fetch as Google In the box, enter the Page on your website you want to re-index. Select Mobile and click Fetch and Render.
Leave the box blank to fetch the homepage. Requests may take a few minutes to process.
A faster way:If your website is too big, running into a lot of categories and subcategories, then you can submit the category page and its subcategories, provided all of them are linked inside the category page, will be indexed automatically.
Suppose, the category “Furniture” on your website has many subcategories like plywood, steel, teak wood, and aluminum. The URL of the parent page of category “Furniture” is www.mysite.com/furniture.php. To re-index the entire category “Furniture”, once again head on to Fetch as Google in the Box, enter fruniture.php, select Mobile and click Fetch and Render.
Another way to force re-indexing process is to submit a fresh sitemap file to Google after making the changes. Google finding the whole website updated with a new time stamp will step up the process.
Let’s assume you’ve uploaded the fresh sitemap to www.mysite.com/sitemap.xml. Submitting site map with Google Webmaster Tool is easy. In your website’s Webmaster Tools main window, go to CrawlSitemaps and click Add/Test Sitemap. In the box, enter sitemap.xml and click Submit Sitemap. Soon a status report on number of links submitted will be displayed.
If you’re almost on deadline, or are still updating after April 21st but want to get those pages the mobile friendly tag and the subsequent ranking boost or just want to cope up, these tips will assist speeding up of the process, particularly for those once-in-a-year updated sites that are abruptly getting mobile friendly makeovers.