What is happening – and you’ve probably noticed it – is that Adobe Flash is not supported by iOS or Android 4.1 and higher, so if you bring up one of those sites on your mobile device, you will see a page with blank spaces and therefore miss out of some of the main content that you were intended to see. Google would like to do away with these “common annoyances” for web browsers when using your mobile devices, so they have started to give you a warning, so to speak, when you search for a website that still uses Flash rather than the HTML5 that is universally supported by everybody.
Google believes that it is their job to help make this happen, so they have released two new resources to help guide web designers in the right direction:
Web Fundamentals – a curated source for modern best practices…and
Web Starter Kit – a starter framework supporting the Web Fundamentals best practices out of the box.
By using these tools, Google believes you can build a “responsive web design” and search-friendly sites. And, of course, Google wants you to make sure that you do not block any ‘crawling of any Googlebot,’ as those files help Google with their algorithms and their sales of information. Keita Oda, Software Engineer, and Pierre Far, Webmaster Trends Analyst at Google UK, in the blog post said it best:
The reason these mobile web searches are of such a concern is that many people believe, Google included, that mobile searches could actually surpass desktop queries this year. Look at it this way – there are about 2 billion PCs in the world and more than 5 billion mobile devices, so it is inevitable that mobile searches will eventually surpass the desktop as the main choice to search the web. I am a curious fellow and sometimes I am watching a show on TV and a question pops up or my wife will ask me a question about something – I don’t run to my laptop or PC, I pull out my smartphone and Google the answer. Right now in the U.S. desktop inquiries far surpass mobile, however, in many developing countries, mobile has already surpassed the desktop. While Google is not trying to oppose either search method, they want BOTH types of searches to benefit the user experience…and of course, their method of grabbing data to sell – that is, after all, their main business.
The other side is that Google is trying to change their aesthetic look – there has been a big push, especially seen at Google I/O last month – to make its design a universal and unified look across all platforms. Some say that Google is helping the user avoid unnecessary browsing, but detractors say that Google is trying to steer you in one direction. Google claims they are not eliminating the non-flash websites from its search results, just giving us advanced knowledge about the site’s compatibility with your device – if that is guiding you away from those sites, then it can be corrected by changing the website design over to the more up-to-date HTML5 content.
Please hit us up on our Google+ Page and let us know if you like Google’s new approach to mobile browsing…as always, we would love to hear from you.