Google buys API management company Apigee for $625 million
Google improves its corporate cloud service catalog with Apigee purchase. Image credit: Pop Fizz Media.

Google (NASDAQ; GOOGL), looks to divide search indexing for mobile devices and desktop computers, the former now being a priority for the company. Gary Illyes, Webmaster Trends Analyst, made the announcement at the 2016 Pubcon Expo in Las Vegas, Nevada.

85 percent of Google’s search results are now ‘mobile-friendly’ which is why the company eliminated the tag.

Google initially indexes (lists) their web results by ‘crawling,’ which means that they follow links from page to page, classify those websites and put them on a general Index to later use them whenever users make queries on the search engine.

The Google Search Index, which contains all of this information and makes it possible for people to look stuff up on Google currently holds over 100 million gigabytes of data and updates consistently, according to the company’s website.

Machine learning makes Google Translate 60% more accurate
Machine learning makes Google Translate 60% more accurate. Image credit: Wallpaper came.

Google uses different algorithms to understand what users search for, then pulls relevant data from the Index, and ranks the results using more than two hundred factors that include page length, site quality, date of publishing, etc.

Google initially designed the Index with desktop computers in mind and now looks to change this given that mobile search statistics have overcome those made by PCs. Mobile websites have a different configuration, which is why they require an updated Index of their own.

Besides, Google’s data regarding mobile searches comes from what the company can measure from desktop searches. Google’s move to a mobile-only desktop will provide them with better data regarding mobile search usage.

How will Google make this happen?

As of today, there is no information regarding the exact way Google will make these changes a reality. The SEL article reported that when following up with Illyes, he only reiterated that the mobile index would see in the light “within months.”

Tweets and video from Pubcon don’t contain any additional piece of information on the subject, nor there are any recordings of Illyes address.

Google launches low-bandwidth services for users in India
Google launches low-bandwidth services for users in India. Image Source: Search Engine Land.

What to expect from this development

Web sites that divide their content between a mobile version and a desktop version will not have to worry if both variants hold the same amount of information. Web sites who make desktop versions with more content than their mobile pages will probably have to change this or get lost inside the new Index’s page two results.

As for users, this can only improve their usage of Google Search, since the statistics are clear on the fact that mobile searching is an ever-growing trend.

Source: Search Engine Land



  1. I don’t recall any specific mention of “desktop-related results will move to page two”. From my understanding Desktop searches will see results from desktop index and Mobile searches will see results from the new mobile index.