Author: Simon Ryan, managing director of Social Advisors, a digital marketing agency.
Today is the day that time finally ran out for old websites.
Starting from today, Google has announced a small, but important change to the way it displays website URLs in mobile searches.
Mobile search results will now display a website’s actual name instead of its URL, along with what Google calls a “breadcrumb-like format” for the URL structure.
The changes are rolling out to mobile search gradually starting in the US today and site breadcrumbs are rolling out worldwide.
Google is making the changes because smartphone use is now at the centre of internet use for so many more people. Their objective is to get people to use search on mobile phones and to make it a much better experience.
The left-hand image below is how it used to appear and the right-hand image is how it will appear from now on.
Well-structured URLs offer users information about a page topic and how the page fits within the website.
To help mobile searchers understand your website better when Google presents it in mobile search results, they will present the real-world name of your site instead of the domain name.
Test your website
You can see if your website passes the new Google test by clicking here.
If you still need to update your website, you can buy some time by making sure all your local information is current and up to date in Yelp, Bing and on Google’s MyBusiness section.
However, you will have to make the permanent changes to prevent dropping off of front page search results completely. So you should contact your webmaster as soon as possible.
Find out more
You can see more on mobile websites by clicking here.