13 Mar What You Need To Know About The Google Mobile-First Index
What You Need To Know About The Google Mobile-First Index
Mobile-users are an ever-growing presence on Google. In fact, mobile-users are now the majority of all Google users. In order to sufficiently recognize the overwhelming majority through the search engine index and results, Google has found a way to adapt. They are creating what they are calling the mobile-first index. However, before we get into explaining the new index system, it is important to understand how the current search engine index works.
In order to begin the indexing process Google must first gather information from existing webpages. This is where web-crawlers come into play. Essentially, web-crawlers are specially designed software that find public web pages and search for links that will bring them to other sites. After jumping from link-to-link and visiting a designated number of webpages, the web-crawlers bring their collective data back to the Google servers.
During the web-crawling process, the software notices new websites, recent changes to websites, and links that are no longer functioning. All of this information is carefully analyzed and documented, and then relayed to the Google servers for further use.
Understanding Search Engine Indexing
Imagine that the webpages and documents that make up Google are an unsorted library. Without some form of organization, it would be very difficult for someone to find the book that they are looking for in the library. And with Google essentially existing as a collection of millions and millions of webpages and documents, it would even more difficult for their users to discover relevant data. Hence, the search engine index.
Once the Google servers have the data collected from the web-crawling process, they can begin to organize the pages into an easy to navigate index. The indexing system pays close attention to important data on each page in order to help organize them correctly including, the date that web pages were published, whether or not pagers contain photos or videos, and specific information about the words found on each page.
With knowledge of the location of each web page, Google creates an index that guides users to the most relevant and useful results of their search.
The Mobile-First Index
Currently, the Google web-crawlers visit the desktop version of websites to gather and relay information to the Google servers in order to assist with the search engine index. But now that the majority of users are mobile-users, Google is creating the mobile-first index.
This indexing system will send the web-crawlers to the mobile version of these websites. The mobile-first index will then be generated using this information instead of the information previously gathered from the desktop versions of these websites.
Businesses who do not have mobile versions of their websites do not need to worry. In these cases, Google will automatically visit their desktop site and use this data instead.
Using the mobile-first index will allow Google to properly represent the majority of their users by creating an index system built from the data of the mobile versions of websites.
When Will The Mobile-First Index Come Into Play?
Although there is currently no known date for the release of the mobile-first index, Google has been testing its new index system through various users. It is safe to say that the release date is at least a few months away, and based on the results of its initial testing could be even further away.
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