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In April 2015 Google made changes to their search engine, penalising websites that are not mobile friendly, as over half of all browsing is now done on mobile devices.

According to the first study examining the impact of the update, 39pc of small business owners reported a drop in Google rankings by three places or more. As a result, traffic was down as much as 50pc!

Traffic to Stephen Bennett’s internet blocker and web filter provider StopProcrastinatingApp.com halved after the Google update, yet he had updated his site for mobile.

“I had taken the warning so did not expect that the update would affect my company,” he said. “I realised something was wrong a week after the update. Traffic to my website from Google searches had dropped by 50pc.”

Mr Bennett is investigating why his site was downgraded but says Google has not been forthcoming on it.

“It is not only costly when your website drops places but also it costs money to pay experts to try to find out the reason why,” he said. “It could have put me out of business.”

Asked to comment, Google’s spokesman cited its blog, which said: “We’ve been encouraging webmasters to create sites that avoid the pitfalls of small text and hard-to-navigate formatting.

"Non-mobile-friendly sites won’t disappear from search results – they may still rank high if they hold great content.”

 

Read the press article here.