Google will not launch Mobile First Indexing before early 2018
Gary Illyes, Google Webmaster Trends Analyst, said that Google doesn’t have a fixed timeline to launch mobile first indexing, but for sure it is not before early 2018. Also, Google will communicate a lot before rolling it out. So, the publishers and webmasters don’t need to worry.
He continued that mobile first indexing will be a big change, and the launch should not hurt the websites immediately, which are not mobile friendly. It may take couple of years to reach a complete mobile first indexing.
He further said that mobile first indexing means mobile first and that the priority will be given to mobile friendly sites in search ranking, however desktop content will still rank.
Gary said that there are still some challenges in mobile first indexing such as there is less available mobile content and fewer links to index in comparison to desktop content. Also, the canonical and annotations tags are missing in mobile content most of the time.
He said that if the websites are mobile responsive, they are good to go for mobile indexing, as most of the things are same such as same content and structured data. There are only few differences such as presentation of content. He reiterated that the content hidden behind ‘read more’ via css will still rank in mobile first indexing.
He said ‘no need to worry, as there is plenty of time to make ready your websites for mobile first indexing.’
However, the truth is that this mobile first indexing will have a big impact on websites and businesses. So, it’s better to get ready now. For small sites, it will not be difficult to make the changes. However, for big ones, it will require loads of resources and money to make those changes, which is not possible sometimes in current tight economy.
Currently, more than 50 percent users access Google search engine from mobile devices, and Google understands this very well. Google always try to provide its users best user experience, not only at Google search engine, but also at the sites, which they reach clicking after Google search. That’s why, Google had launched Accelerated Mobile Pages (AMP) last year, and continuously encouraging the webmasters to adapt this format for better site speed.
Good luck webmasters, publishers and Google for mobile first indexing launch!