Google and the other major search engines are continuing to do all they can to allow mobile searches to include results not just from the web but from within mobile apps as well and, take it from us as longtime NY and NJ SEO experts, that’s big news for businesses and marketers everywhere.
We posted an article a while back in which we broke down how app indexing works and how to enable Google to crawl your app content. For more on that, check out this post Google Will Now Recommend Apps in Mobile Search Results on Android Devices, but today’s post is all about the latest changes in app indexing and what you need to know to keep up with its ongoing evolution.
First, let’s play catch up.
We’ve been an SEO company in NY and NJ for long enough to know that it’s often easier to predict where certain things are headed in the industry if you know where they’ve been. So, before discussing where app indexing is currently at and headed, let’s quickly go over where it started.
Back in 2013, Google announced it would begin indexing only app content that had a related web version for a select number of publishers, solely for Android apps, and that it could only be accessed by users who already had the app installed.
Eventually, Chrome and Safari entered the equation, any webmaster could have their Android app included in search results who wanted it, and users could access app content whether they had it installed or not. They’d just have to download it if they didn’t.
What’s the latest?
Now, Google’s begun experimenting, and anyone in search engine optimization knows that’s worth paying close attention to. The search engine’s allowing content that doesn’t have a web version and only exists within the app itself, app-only content, to be indexed and ranked, although right now, they’re only doing it with 9 select apps.
They’re also now allowing app content to be accessed without requiring searchers to download the app and this new feature, called “App Streaming,” won’t just let users view content either. It will enable them to have full use of the app, as long as they have an advanced enough version of Android and a strong wifi connection. If not, they won’t see the streaming option in their results, but if they have the app installed, they will see the app-only links.
Like mentioned above, right now, Google is only experimenting with certain Android apps, but if things go well, they’ll likely expand to more and even to iOS apps as well. So, as far as getting your app-only content indexed and ranked, there’s nothing you can do at the moment. Google’s testing the waters with the selected apps and you just have to wait.
However, when that does become a possibility, according to Google, you won’t have to do anything differently. Just use the App Indexing API like usual and the search engine will handle the rest.
App indexing allows for a better user experience.
The bottom line is, search success is all about the quality of your content marketing and the user experience you provide visitors with nowadays, and app indexing is now a key new part of creating an effective user experience.
If certain parts of your target audience have grown accustomed to using apps, you should do everything you can to give them that option by allowing your content to be indexed and returned that way to build a better user experience for them.
About Climb The Search: A leading SEO agency in NJ / NY, CTS offers the total search marketing package, including search engine advertising, inbound marketing, and website design. At CTS, we help businesses grow, every single day.