Google update: Mobile website speed will soon affect mobile ranking

Make sure your site is ready for Google’s July 2018 “Speed Update”

We’ve talked about mobile site speed before — including what can impact it, the negative impact it has on the overall user experience, and what you can do to improve your mobile site speed. And now, that’s going to matter if you want to get found on Google when your customers are searching on their phones, tablets and other mobile devices.

From Google’s Webmaster Central Blog:

Although speed has been used in ranking for some time, that signal was focused on desktop searches. Today we’re announcing that starting in July 2018, page speed will be a ranking factor for mobile searches.

In other words, if you haven’t taken the time to make sure your business website is “mobile friendly” (including making sure that it’s fast)…you only have a few months to get “up to speed.”

What Google’s Speed Update means for your small business mobile website

  1. A fast-loading, user-friendly mobile website will be more important than ever before. If your site’s pages take too long to load on phones and tablets, you could see a drop in your overall ranking and visibility on mobile. But there’s no one-size-fits-all speed that mobile sites need to operate at, and only the slowest mobile sites may suffer. According to, “Speed Update will mainly impact the websites which deliver the ‘slowest experience’ to users.”
  2. Content (that matches what your customers are looking for) is still king. Creating content that’s timely, relevant, useful and unique for your site visitors can still trump changes like the Speed Update. In Google’s words, “The intent of the search query is still a very strong signal, so a slow page may still rank highly if it has great, relevant content.”
  3. “Speed is just one of many signals that are used to rank pages. Keep in mind that intent of the search query is still a very strong signal, so a slow page may still rank highly if it has great, relevant content.” That’s what Google told, meaning that (as always) focusing exclusively on one of factors Google looks at isn’t a winning plan. You need the both / and — a fast mobile site that ALSO has good, relevant content.

Not sure if your site is up to speed on mobile? Find out more about Hibu’s full-service, mobile-friendly website solutions now. There’s still plenty of time to get a new site that’s fast enough to compete online, on mobile and more.
Ian Messinger

Ian Messinger

A longtime lover of a little alliteration, Ian is Hibu's Senior Copywriter for Marketing and Communications. Since joining in 2007, he's worked closely with the product development and creative services teams to get first-hand knowledge of how Hibu's marketing products help small business succeed online - knowledge he's happy to share with you here!

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