January 10th, 2017 — Google updated its search algorithm and this change may influence your marketing strategies.
Google has changed its consideration of how content appears on mobile devices as a ranking factor for mobile-first content.
We have been receiving some inquiries on this topic and its effect on your pop ups, so we have followed up with a deeper dive to see if webmasters have noticed any issues.
Google penalizes pages where content is instantly hidden behind interstitials
One of the aims of Google’s update is to cut annoying widgets on sites. Let’s be honest — when you land on a page and cannot see any content behind some irrelevant pop up, you’re not happy. You lose time, interest, and motivation to browse that site.
This is what Google calls “interstitials”.
Are your pop ups in the dangerous zone in Google’s eyes?
Using relevant and targeted pop ups can play an important role in your acquisition strategy, and that’s fine! But you don’t want to be penalized and fail your marketing efforts by tripping Google’s bots.
The good news is there are 100% legitimate ways to keep your pop ups running and doing the job of converting your traffic, and Picreel is already compliant. Here are a few facts to help answer any popup questions:
1. This is about mobile experience only
Google updates mobile algorithms. Desktops are not influenced in any way.
You’ll be happy to know that you can run any pop ups on desktop devices.
2. Google targets intrusive interstitials only on FIRST mobile pages
You can use any popups (even interstitials) on the second, third, fourth, etc. page after visitor lands on you site from the search.
Google punish interstitials that cover content on the first page where visitors land from Google search. Pages after that are not harmed.
3. Mobile pop ups of a reasonable size are good
Size matters. Google punishes pop ups that cover most of your screen.
See the third example on the image below?
Source: Search Engine Land
Did you notice the close button? Make sure your pop ups are also easily dismissible.
4. Exit intent pop ups between pages wouldn’t count as interstitials
If you use such exit interstitial there is no reason to panic. In fact, John Mueller from Google answered questions about interstitials triggered by exit intent. This is not something that the recent Google update targets, and this is the very principal Picreel was built on!
Do you use pop ups as a part of your marketing strategy? Did you revisit your strategy after the Google update? Let’s discuss in the comments below.