As you may have noticed, Google is already testing its new Mobile first index on live SERPs. Since they will roll out the new mobile first index in 2018, you must prepare for that. If not, you will lose organic traffic coming from Google. The good news is, since you run a WordPress site, your theme probably uses responsive design for the mobile version of your site. Responsive design is perfectly good for mobile websites. Even Google recommends using responsive design. Nevertheless, this is not everything you have to take in mind with the new mobile first index.
Mobile first SEO for WordPress
In the following short list, I will explain you some main points you must take in mind when preparing for the mobile first index.
- Mobile first design is not simply responsive design, it is also smaller stylesheets with fewer declarations. Take in mind that smartphone users many times donÂ´t have access to fast internet. Huge stylesheets take a lot of time to get loaded. Therefore, write smaller ones.
- Mobile first design declares images the size they get downloaded on mobile devices and not on desktops. Images are the biggest packages, that must be downloaded. Make sure those packages are not bigger as needed.
- Mobile first design in general has less code than a desktop website. Less code means less space for errors and of course less time to be loaded.
- Mobile first design must make sure, that websites get loaded fast even if the mobile device has low bandwidth.
As you see, mobile first is much more than simply responsive design. A huge issue of mobile first is the pagespeed. Pagespeed will become even more important for SEO than it right now.
How to select a mobile first WordPress Theme?
Basically all the WordPress themes out there are responsive. But as you know by now, this is not enough. I recommend you to test every theme before you use it. It is not only about the design. Consider Pagespeed as the most important factor, behind responsive design. Badly coded themes slow down your website.