Google Offers to Help Small Businesses With Mobile Website Stress Test

Evaluation includes three key metrics

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Google says it wants to help small businesses know if their mobile websites are good enough.

Today, the company is introducing a way for small businesses to test their website's ability to perform across devices. The analysis gives websites a score highlighting three key metrics: mobile-friendliness (quality of the user experience), mobile speed (how long a mobile site it takes to load) and desktop speed (how long the desktop version takes to load).

According to Google, 9 out of 10 people leave a mobile website if it isn't performing to their standards. That could mean the difference between deal or no deal.

"Your customers live online," according to a blog post published today. "When they need information or want to find a nearby store or product, they grab the nearest device. On average, people check their phones more than 150 times a day, and more searches occur on mobile phones than computers.  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."

Working closely with Google on the initiative was Huge, Google's digital agency of record.

"The goal of Test My Site is to deliver what can be complicated, technical information in recommendations that are meaningful and actionable to business owners regardless of their technical expertise," said Jen Tank, Huge's creative director. "Test My Site educates business owners on the importance of a multi-device digital presence so users love their website no matter which device they are on."

While this free offering could be a nice gesture in line with Google's old slogan of "Don't Be Evil," it's also yet another sign of the search engine giant's increasing focus on the mobile web. And now that more than 50 percent of all searches now come from mobile devices, the success of mobile websites—even small ones—is more important than ever before.

According to research from Yodle and Research Now, about 52 percent of around 400 small businesses surveyed said they've optimized their websites for the mobile web. However, according to eMarketer, a separate survey by RBC Capital Marketers found that around 40 percent of small businesses still haven't done anything.

@martyswant Marty Swant is a former technology staff writer for Adweek.
Publish date: June 2, 2016 © 2020 Adweek, LLC. - All Rights Reserved and NOT FOR REPRINT