It's here! Google began rolling out its Mobile-Friendly Update today.
The algorithm update will use a website's mobile friendliness as a ranking factor. Search results returned to a user on a smartphone or tablet will favor pages that are optimized for smartphone and tablet consumption.
The update affects individual pages (not entire sites) and will be rolled out across global searches.
To learn more about what will and will not be affected, check out our blog post from last week, What Will Google Mobile Algorithm Update Affect?
The algorithm roll out will take a while to complete, weeks possibly. You will not be able to fully determine how the update affects your traffic immediately. This morning, Google published an official update on its Webmaster Central Blog that states:
"If your site’s pages aren’t mobile-friendly, there may be a significant decrease in mobile traffic from Google Search. But have no fear, once your site becomes mobile-friendly, we will automatically re-process (i.e., crawl and index) your pages."
Google also answered FAQs today about the update. One question touches on whether a website not optimized for mobile will disappear completely from mobile search results. Google answered:
"While the mobile-friendly change is important, we still use a variety of signals to rank search results. The intent of the search query is still a very strong signal – so even if a page with high quality content is not mobile-friendly, it could still rank high if it has great content for the query."