Why Having A Mobile Friendly Website Is Essential Already, Even Before Google’s April 21st Deadline
Imagine you woke up one morning to find that someone had moved your hotel off a main road and hidden it in a suburban backstreet. Or done the same with any business you have – offline or online.
Google is now doing the equivalent to website rankings.
In Adelaide and across Australia, we are already seeing Google penalise businesses that don’t provide consumers with a good experience on mobile phones. The reason is simple. Searches made from mobiles and tablets are increasing at an incredible rate. There are more of these hooked to the internet than there are PCs!
We saw the first companies start to suffer in December last year.
In one case, a business that ranked on page one for most of its chosen search terms suddenly found they had dropped from number 1 to 50 and worse, where they will never be found.
It’s the equivalent of moving your business off a main road to a suburban backstreet with no passing traffic.
What to do:
- Analyse if you are at risk. Even if you have a mobile site attached to your main site, you are at risk. Part of this analysis should include checking if you have received a warning in Google Webmaster Tools.
- Act now. What Google wants is one website that recognises what device you are on and redesigns the page to suit the device. This is called “responsive design”.
If you need assistance, please feel free to contact us. We’ve been advising on this for more than two years: Google came out with their “thoughts” on this last year so it was obvious that this would feature in their algorithm pretty soon.
More About Reviews
Fake reviews can be highly damaging and they leave the victim powerless when the online forum refuses to delete the criticism.
The Australian Competition and Consumer Commission (ACCC) has started an investigation in this area, which is welcome news.However, it works both ways and businesses that post their own fake reviews are also breaking the law.
The Australia “watchdog” does have the power to act, such as its action against removalist business Citymove for misleading online reviews. Citymove admitted to having made representations on its website that purported to be testimonials by genuine consumers when they were not. Citymove paid a $6600 infringement notice.
The following are some of the ACCC’s guidelines.
Genuine online reviews
Online reviews provide consumers with information about products,services and businesses based on the experience of other consumers. Reviews may appear on a business’ own site, on social media or on a review platforms. Consumer expect reviews to be independent and genuine to help then make more informed purchasing decisions.
Fake or misleading reviews
Business and review platforms that do not remove reviews that they know to be fake risk breaching the Competition and Consumer Act 2010
Businesses that offer incentives to those who write positive reviews risk misleading consumers and breaching the CCA. Incentives should only be offered in exchange for reviews of your business (its product or services) if: incentives are offered equally to consumers likely to be complimentary and consumers likely to be critical, and positive and negative reviews are treated the same the reviewer is expressly told that the incentive is available whether the review is positive or negative, the incentive is prominently disclosed to users who rely on affected reviews.
Hope this is helpful. As always, give us a call to know more – (+61) 07 5474 9790 or (+61) 41 1827 702 or contact us here.