“Think With Google” Website Speed Test Grades Internet “F” In Mobile Site Speed
So, Google has a shiny, new mobile-friendly site tool. What does this mean? Is your site going to be graded differently? Can it ever live up to sites like Apple, Moz, or even the mighty Google itself? Do you immediately need to run out and have your web developer take a hammer and nails to your website? The answer is most likely no to all of these questions (unless your website still isnâ€™t mobile-friendlyÂ in the year 2016, then you should probably revisit question 3).
Google took two of their tools that have already existed for some time: PageSpeed Insights and the Mobile Friendly Test, which just got a makeover last month. Googleâ€™s new â€śThink With Googleâ€ť website speed test tool combines these two useful tools into one sleek, sexy, animated and engaging tool that can be helpful, IF you donâ€™t get stuck on the fact that your website probably has poor mobile speed.
Yes, Your Website Probably Has Poor Mobile Speed
Now, I know what youâ€™re thinking. â€śKelly, you have not done enough research to support the claim that every website except Google.com has poor mobile speed according to Google.com.â€ť You are right, reader, I have not. I am 100% sure that there are websites out there (besides Google’s) that have “fair” (I’m looking at you, Netflix. You go, Netflix.) or even “good” mobile site speed, but they seem to be few and far between. I tested a handful of generally reputableÂ websites, and Google pretty much gave them all a big, fat, red F when it comes to mobile site speed:
**Big props to FacebookÂ and Moz on that Desktop speed.**
Boy, Google is one tough grader. But like a parent who â€śonly wants whatâ€™s best for you,â€ť I truly believe that it is out of love that Google grades us so harshly.
Itâ€™s All Going to Be A-Ok
The good news is that with this shiny â€śnewâ€ť tool, nothing has really changed. Go ahead — pop those URLs into PageSpeed Insights or the Mobile Friendly Test and youâ€™ll see that the numbers more or less match up. Google is trying to make it simplerÂ for you to gather insight about your website in oneÂ easy-to-use,Â modern place. Whether you take the numbers and run screaming or decide to make proper use of them instead, the choice isÂ completely up to you.
Google wants you to have a mobile-friendly website, so much so that they have added this as a factor in their search-ranking criteria steadily over time. If you havenâ€™t jumped on the responsive bandwagon by now, itâ€™s high-time that you do, my friend, or you could be facing the next Mobilegeddon. But being â€śmobile friendlyâ€ť isnâ€™t just about having a responsive website. Below is a list of some of Googleâ€™s tips for ensuring that your website meets its mobile-friendly standards:
- Size tap targets appropriately
- Avoid app install institials that hide content
- Avoid plugins
- Configure the viewport
- Size content to viewport
- Use legible font sizes
- So many more things…
If you donâ€™t know what all of those things are, itâ€™s OK. We can help. Shameless plug.
Youâ€™ll see — with the examples above and with many of your own examples, Iâ€™m sure — that you can have a bright *thumbs up emoji* *100 emoji* *fire emoji* for mobile friendliness but not make the cut with mobile site speed, or perhaps even desktop site speed. These are things to work on and constantly improve, but they should not have you up in arms.
Don’t JustÂ Sweep It Under the Rug
To make a long blog short, your website is probably not going to get a gold star for Googleâ€™s elusive definition of â€śgood mobile site speedâ€ť tomorrow. If the folks at Facebook, Amazon, Moz, or Apple canâ€™t pass, we should feel pretty comfortable where we stand. But donâ€™t just brush your score off, either. Listen to what Google is telling you. Take note of the improvements you can make (for example, the list at the right), and start from there.
Googleâ€™s new â€śThink Withâ€ť speed test tool is pretty, itâ€™s engaging, and if you use it right, it can be pretty darn useful. But donâ€™t let it scare you, either. If you take something away from this post, it should be this: Your customers and clients are the ones that your website should be built for, and your customers and clients live in a world where theyâ€™re on the go more than ever. Your website shouldnâ€™t make their lives more difficult, soÂ listen to Google as much as you can without running away, sad-Michael-Jordan crying.
This tool is clearly still relatively new and weÂ
hope expect there willÂ be improvements in the future, but we aren’t getting our panties in a bunch just yet. Overall,Â Google is trying to be a good parent and raise well-rounded, thoughtful children. It may frustrate you with its criticism and harsh punishments, but in the end, it only wants whatâ€™s best for us.