Google’s upcoming mobile-friendly algorithm has webmasters panicking as the deadline fast approaches. As always, when there is fear there is also plenty of misinformation.
In particular, there is one myth going around which is stirring up quite a bit of trouble.
Google has attempted to be clear that their new mobile algorithm will demote pages that don’t pass a mobile-friendliness test when they might appear in mobile search results pages. Unfortunately, that is being misconstrued.
As Barry Schwartz shared, emails are going around proclaiming Google will be completely removing sites from search results if they don’t live up to the mobile standard. Not demoted, but completely de-listed and removed from Google.
The rumor was noticed when Ashley Berman Hale, an active personality in the Google Webmaster Help Channels, posted an email she recently received with the title “Google Removing Your Site From Search Results This Month!”
The copy of the email then goes on to say, “Did you know Google will demote or delist you from their search results if you don’t have a mobile friendly site by April 21st?”
Now, the mobile algorithm on the horizon is certainly controversial among webmasters, but there is no need to be spreading outright lies. Google’s initial announcement of the algorithm was relatively vague, but they have been working hard to make sure webmasters’ questions were getting answered. It also didn’t take long for many of the experts from Google to chime in and clear the air.
Google’s Gary Illyes posted a response on Twitter:
So I don't mind getting people motivated to go mobile friendly, but I do mind spreading false things. Not nice, guys https://t.co/0X0VxMQlIE
— Gary "鯨理" Illyes (@methode) April 15, 2015
Google’s John Mueller also posted a short statement on Google+ to make matters perfectly clear:
It’s great to get people motivated to make their website mobile-friendly, but we’re not going to be removing sites from search just because they’re not mobile-friendly. You can test your pages & reach our documentation (including some simple tweaks that might work for your CMS too) at http://g.co/mobilefriendly
Hopefully this settles the matter once and for all. Google’s algorithm WILL demote your site on mobile search results, but it WILL NOT affect you on desktop search results or completely remove you from the listings.