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Google News Roundup: March 2015

As always, the folks up in Mountain View (and elsewhere!) have been busy. There’s not as much as usual, but what’s to come is pretty major.

Google to Push Update on April 21

According to an official Google Webmaster blog post, Google will begin using mobile-friendliness of a website as a ranking signal. From the post:

Starting April 21, we will be expanding our use of mobile-friendliness as a ranking signal. This change will affect mobile searches in all languages worldwide and will have a significant impact in our search results. Consequently, users will find it easier to get relevant, high quality search results that are optimized for their devices.

Google will also begin using app data to personalize search for logged-in users.

To learn more, click through to the blog post, or check out this post from SearchMetrics with fuller coverage.

Google Maps Adds New Feature: Moved Locations

Google Maps has added a new option to is “Report Problem” feature: the ability to report that a location has moved.

This option is accessed from the same menu as the other problems a user can report, and allows users to input the address of the new location of a business. Historically, it’s been very difficult to report a moved business to Google and/or their Maps team.

For more information, check out SEO Roundtable’s coverage, or this thread on Local Search Forums.

Google Offers Advice on Most Common Mobile Mistake

The Google Developers released a list of the top seven most common mistakes made by web developers when adapting a website for mobile. They are:

  1. Blocked JavaScript, CSS and image files
  2. Unplayable content
  3. Faulty redirects
  4. Mobile-only 404s
  5. App download interstitials
  6. Irrelevant cross-links
  7. Slow mobile pages

In addition, each of these items links to an individual page where the problem is described in greater details, sometimes with screencaptures to illustrate the issue. The Google Developers have also offered advice on how to resolve the problems, including technical and nontechnical fixes where appropriate.