It’s official, Google is penalizing Brands who neglected to eliminate popups.
Google’s mobile algorithm update launched January 10th #popupdoomsday and our reflections from yesterday addressed the lack of immediate significant site impacts (positive or negative). We referred to Glenn Gabe, President of G-Squared Interactive, analysis of Google mobile index testing from November and December 2016 to help us mold our impact predictions.
Gabe’s compilation of “sites that employ mobile popups or interstitials” showed no changes in rankings on 1/10/17 when the update first activated. Checking his list today showed that a few sites experienced heavy drops; one example shows a ranking shift from #5 to #16. He is continually updating his post with visuals of comparisons in site rankings from Google from 1/8/17 and 1/12/17.
We looked into a sample of brands and found that they were indexing lower for key associated terms. Some have fallen so far, they are no longer on page 1 of Google’s search results.
While this update was initially specific to mobile rankings, Google decided that the mobile version of sites would be used for desktop rankings as well.
These initial findings are worrisome, but the impacts of this update aren’t fully known, yet. Time will tell what it will mean for brands sales, traffic, and revenue but one thing we know for certain is that a good customer experience is timeless.