New Google Tool Tests Mobile Performance of Websites

In addition to helping Website owners assess how fast and friendly their sites are on mobile devices, the tool offers fixes as well.

mobile-friendly websites

Google has released a new tool that it says lets Website owners test the mobile friendliness and speed of their sites and get fixes for any issues that might be identified in the process.

To run a test, all that site owners or administrators have to do is type their URL into the tool, which is hosted by Google's Think With Google marketing analytics team.

The "test my site tool" then runs a series of tests on the site and ranks it on a scale of 1 to 100 for mobile friendliness, mobile speed and desktop speed. The tool considers a variety of factors when assigning a ranking for each category.

For instance, to assess a Website's mobile friendliness, the Google tool considers features such as tap friendly buttons, ease of navigation within a small screen format, and the manner in which the most relevant or important information on a page is presented to the user. Other factors that Google considers when ranking a Website's mobile friendliness include font sizes, features that hide or make it hard to read content, and plug-ins.

Similarly, when ranking a Website for mobile speed, the Google tool looks at a variety of factors that it considers as having a direct impact on how quickly or slowly the site loads on mobile devices. For instance, it looks at whether the site does landing page redirects, employs browser caching or uses image optimization tools to ensure images load quickly on mobile devices.

As part of the analysis, the Google tool also ranks the site on how well it performs on desktop and laptop screens. Many of the factors that go into this score are the same as the measures that Google uses to evaluate a site's performance on mobile devices, such as browser caching and image optimization.

If a site meets all, or most, of Google's measures for a particular category, the company assigns a "Passed" rating for that category. For issues it sees as important but not critically so, the tool assigns a "consider fixing" recommendation while for those it considers as absolutely necessary to fix, the tool assigns a "should fix" rating.

Website owners who want recommendations on addressing the issues identified by the Google tool can get them by submitting a request for a free report from the company.

In a blog post, Yong Su Kim, Google's vice president of small and medium business sales for the Americas, said the tool can help Website owners ensure better engagement with mobile visitors to their sites. "On average, people check their phones more than 150 times a day, and more searches occur on mobile phones than computers," he wrote. "But if a potential customer is on a phone, and a site isn't easy to use, they're five times more likely to leave."

Jaikumar Vijayan

Jaikumar Vijayan

Vijayan is an award-winning independent journalist and tech content creation specialist covering data security and privacy, business intelligence, big data and data analytics.