More threads by Dustybones

Aug 7, 2013
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Here is a good post by Mike O'Brien

Are Desktop Sites Still Necessary? No, Says Google's Mueller

You don't need a desktop website, according to Google's John Mueller.

In a Hangout on Friday, Mueller, a webmaster trends analyst for the search giant, said that having a mobile site should suffice. He added that going mobile-first or mobile-only wouldn't hurt a page's rank, even in desktop search results.

Above is just a snippet, so head over to read the rest.

Thanks Mike O'Brien!

What do you think???

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Thanks Justin, I saw a couple different headlines about that yesterday.

So I guess if you are just starting out with your 1st site, you could just go mobile.
Great post, But I we still need to consider desktop as well. I've worked in the plastic surgery industry for over 4 years doing SEO/Dev & its funny because we saw a lot more visits on mobile devics but much higher conversions rate on desktop. That being said "yes" people browse mobile for many things usually to get quick answers, but when it comes to something personal like medical your gonna want to take a closer look. And most likly you will use a desktop or tablet. That is why its key to have a website that is user friendly on all devices.
Mobile friendly is now a requirement for any business. But it's a different medium and the content needs to be concise and compressed. I would not recommend mobile only for a second.

In fact, my recommendation is still design for desktop first, THEN make it work for mobile.

I agree with MarketingGiant above: Mobile is for quick or preliminary information. Desktop is where decisions are made.
August 18, 2015

John Mueller says:

With regards to (paraphrased) "a mobile-only site is fine" (a comment for one of the questions in a recent hangout), I'd just like to clarify that just because you can do something, doesn't mean you should, nor that it's a best practice :). If all we have from a business is a mobile-friendly site, then we'd rather index that than nothing. That obviously doesn't make it a great practice though. A good way to make it work in both worlds would be to have a site that uses responsive web-design techniques to adjust to the size of the user's device / settings.

I can imagine some sites starting off with only a mobile-friendly website (it's kinda like businesses that use a mobile app instead of a website), but I'm sure most would do well to also provide an awesome experience for users with larger screens (be it a desktop, laptop, mobile, TV, etc.). 
Thanks David. I was thinking there would be some clarification of that original statement.
Pretty baited headline. It's frustrating to click on a headline like that and then be disappointed with the content.

Also, it seems like John's comments were taken completely out of context. I don't believe he said desktop websites were unnecessary. I'd have to go listen but the quotes make it sound like he was answering if a mobile only website would survive in the desktop SERP's. Which he said it would.

Mobile only is a bad recommendation for local businesses. Heck, even mobile first is a bad recommendation in my opinion. In our region, 75% of users (according to Google Analytics) still use the desktop to access our local business websites.

The stat on mobile searches overtaking desktop searches only tells 1/10 of the story. Sure, when I need quick info I may use my mobile device. Like what other movies an actor has been in, or looking up news headlines. But if I need to do research, such as when I make a purchase decision, there's no way I'm using mobile. It takes too long to do research, too cumbersome to switch between multiple websites to comparison shop and I know the sites don't always show me all available options on mobile that are present on desktop versions, among other issues.

Also, how many of those mobile searches in that study are kids on their phones? Kids aren't a local business's target market. Homeowners 30+ are normally. And that demographic is still prone to using desktop.

Again, like clockwork, every site I see in GA that is a local business has 75% traffic to the desktop. Mobile is around 20% and 5% from tablets.

I'd like to see stats on devices used in purchasing decisions by 30+ homeowners.

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