Google: Rankings Drop After Mobile Usability Fail?

Posted by

Google’s John Mueller reacted to a Reddit SEO discussion where a search console cautioning about mobile use was soon after followed by a rankings drop in a medical related site.

The timing of the drop in rankings occurring right after search console issued a cautioning about mobile use problems made the two events appear to be related.

The person despaired since they fixed the issue, verified the fix through Google search console however the rankings changes haven’t reversed.

These are the salient information:

“Around Aug. 2022, I observed that Google Browse Console was stating ALL of our pages were now stopping working Mobile Functionality requirements. I had a developer “fix” the pages …

… I resubmitted the sitemap & asked Google to “Verify” all of my repairs on Oct. 25, 2022. It has actually been 15 days with no motion.”

Understanding Modifications in Ranking

John Mueller reacted in the Reddit discussion, observing that in his viewpoint the mobile functionality problems were unrelated to the rankings drop.

Mueller wrote:

“I’ll go out on a limb and state the factor for rankings altering has absolutely nothing to do with this.

I ‘d read the quality raters standards and the content Google has on the recent updates for some ideas, particularly for medical content like that.”

This is a fantastic example of how the most apparent reason for something happening is not constantly the correct reason, it’s just the most obvious.

Obvious is not the same as precise or appropriate, although it may look like it.

When detecting an issue it’s important to keep an open mind about the causes and to not stop diagnosing a concern at the very first more obvious description.

John dismissed the mobile use issue as being severe adequate to impact rankings.

His response suggested that major content quality concerns are a likelier reason for a rankings change, particularly if the modification takes place around the same time as an algorithm update.

The Google Raters Standards are a guide for examining site quality in an objective way, devoid of subjective ideas of what constitutes site quality.

So it makes good sense that Mueller recommended to the Redditor that they must check out the raters standards to see if the descriptions of what specifies website quality matches those of the website in concern.

Coincidentally, Google recently published new documentation for helping publishers comprehend what Google thinks about rank-worthy material.

The document is called, Developing practical, reputable, people-first material. The paperwork consists of a section that relates to this problem, Get to know E-A-T and the quality rater guidelines.

Google’s assistance page describes that their algorithm utilizes numerous factors to understand whether a web page is professional, reliable and trustworthy, particularly for Your Money Your Life pages such as those on medical topics.

This section of the documentation explains why the quality raters standards details is very important:

“… our systems offer much more weight to content that lines up with strong E-A-T for topics that might substantially impact the health, monetary stability, or security of individuals, or the welfare or well-being of society.

We call these “Your Cash or Your Life” topics, or YMYL for brief.”

Browse Console Fix Validations Are Usually Informative

Mueller next discussed the search console fix validations and what they actually imply.

He continued his answer:

“For indexing issues, “verify fix” helps to speed up recrawling.

For everything else, it’s more about offering you details on what’s occurring, to let you understand if your changes had any impact.

There’s no “the site fixed it, let’s launch the hand brake” impact from this, it’s really mainly for you: you stated it was good now, and here is what Google discovered.”

YMYL Medical Material

The individual asking the concern reacted to Mueller by keeping in mind that most of the website material was written by medical professionals.

They next point out how they also write material that is implied to communicate competence, authoritativeness and dependability.

This is what they shared:

“I’ve attempted to actually write blog site posts & even marketing pages that have a rewarding answer above the fold, however then explain the details after.

Pretty much everything a person would do if they were legitimate trying to get a response throughout– which is likewise what you check out to be “EAT” finest practices.


They lamented that their rivals with old content surpassed them in the rankings.

Diagnosing a ranking issue is often more than just navel looking one’s own site.

It might be useful to truly go into the rival site to understand what their strengths are that may be accounting for their increased search exposure.

It might look like after an update that Google is “gratifying” websites that have this or that, like good mobile usability, Frequently asked questions, and so on.

But that’s not really how search algorithms work.

Browse algorithms, in a nutshell, attempt to understand 3 things:

  1. The meaning of a search inquiries
  2. The significance of web pages
  3. Site quality

So it follows that any improvements to the algorithm might likely be an enhancement in one or all 3 (most likely all three).

And that’s where John Mueller’s motivation to read the Google Search Quality Raters Standards (PDF) can be found in.

It might also be handy to check out Google’s wonderful Browse Quality Raters Guidelines Summary (PDF) since it’s shorter and much easier to understand.


Read the Reddit Concern and Response

Impact Of “Verifying” A Fix In Browse Console/Mobile Functionality

Image by Best SMM Panel/Khosro