Google has announced two upcoming changes pertaining to mobile search results to make it easier for the users to find the content that they are looking for. The search giant has planned to remove its mobile-friendly label that was launched a couple of years ago. This label has been helping users to find pages where the contents and texts are easily readable.

Google’s mobile-friendly label appears beside properly optimized mobile web pages in search results. With more than 85% of web pages in mobile search results meet this mobile-friendly norm, Google has planned to remove the label to keep the search results uncluttered. However, the mobile-friendly criteria will remain to be a ranking factor.

Google will penalize mobile web pages that show intrusive interstitials and even have impacts on their ranking in search results. All these changes will come into effect from January 10, 2017. Google says that majority of mobile pages have texts and contents that are readable without zooming. However, there are some pages that show some intrusive interstitials that prevent users from accessing the content easily. Pages with intrusive interstitials can be challenging on mobile devices and provide the poor experience to the users when compared to pages that are readily accessible.

Google listed techniques that make content less accessible:

  • Showing a popup covering main content
  • Standalone interstitial that has to be closed to access the main content
  • Layout, where the standalone interstitial is similar to above the fold portion of the mobile page and the original content, is in-lined underneath the fold.

Interstitials that can be accepted by the new signal:

  • Interstitials which are in compliance with a legal obligation such as age verification and cookie usage.
  • Banners that are easily dismissible and use considerable screen space.
  • Login dialogs on site where the content is not openly indexable.

With continued efforts, Google has understood the need for extending their focus on interstitials. The search giant has also dismissed the check for app-install interstitials from the mobile friendly test and has interested into this signal in mobile search.

Image source: Google Images