We knew it was coming – but now the Google penalty for pop ups on mobile is officially here. Make sure your site is compliant.
What Is The Google Penalty for Pop Ups?
What is this Google penalty for pop ups on mobile that you speak of? Ok – if you are asking me that question – take a look here to bring yourself up to date.
Basically, Google has been seeing a trend that more and more people are using mobile devices, like smartphones and tablet devices, to search the internet.Apparently, computers are kind of old school these days.
So, as a result, Google wants to make the user experience better for people on mobile devices.
If you’ve ever landed on a website using your phone and been greeted by a big, old, pop up asking you to subscribe or do something else (especially if you can’t click it away) then you know how annoying it can be.
Google has said enough is enough and, starting today, will impose a penalty on websites that use these pop up windows and welcome mats. The penalty is not a monetary thing, at least not directly. Rather, the Google penalty for pop ups is a penalty that will affect your search rankings. If you previously were on page 1 of the search results for certain keywords, your site might get pushed down to page 2 or 3 or worse.
This is new rule is good news for you as a searcher or consumer – but not so much for you as an internet marketer.
How Can You Stay In Compliance?
Only For Mobile
The first thing to remember is that the Google penalty for pop ups is only imposed if you serve pop ups on your mobile site.
So, the easiest thing to do would be to disable all pop ups and welcome mats on your mobile platform.
This is the route that I am taking.
I, honestly, never get a lot of subscribers from my pop ups period. So, I don’t feel like I am losing out on much by eliminating them from mobile (I still use them on desktop). If you are unsure of how effective your pop ups are – take a look at your stats to make an informed decision.
I feel like exit intent pop ups are sort of a gray area – but I think that the general opinion is that these are ok.
Hello Bars (a notification bar that appears at the top of your content) seem to pass Google muster as long as they don’t obscure your content, are easily dismissable, and take up a small amount of screen space.
How To Make The Changes
As bloggers, many of us use a third party service to deliver pop ups on our blogs.
Many of these services have published guidelines on how their customers can avoid the Google penalty for pop ups on mobile.
Here is some guidance from a few popular services:
- If you use Convertkit to serve pop ups – read this
- SumoMe users – read this article
- MailMunch customers – read here
- ThriveLeads users can find guidance here.
Finally, here is an article that sums up the changes really well, regardless of what platform you use for popups.
Test Your Site
Finally, Google itself has a little tool that you can use to test if your site is mobile friendly.
Just pop in your URL and see what Google has to say about you.
What Steps are You Taking?
So, tell me, what steps will you take to avoid the Google penalty for popups on mobile? Join the discussion and leave a comment below.