google-thumbGoogle has begun slowly rolling out the mobile-first index to a small subset of users. The folks at Search Engine Land has published a large list of FAQs around the mobile-first index.

But one interesting tidbit is that by default, Google isn’t going to use the AMP version of your page for the mobile index, even if you don’t have a mobile-friendly alternative.

Here’s an example from Barry Schwartz:

[Y]ou have a website that is only desktop-friendly, i.e., there is no mobile-friendly version, but you decide to skip mobile-friendly and go directly to building AMP pages for your site. So now you have a desktop version and an AMP version of your website. AMP is super mobile-friendly, it is super-fast, and it is specifically designed for mobile.

As Barry pointed out, Google said that thay won’t use the AMP version in the new mobile-firsts index, and use the desktop version instead.  It’s possible to force Google to use AMP in this case, but you’ll have to use a rel alternate attribute to force it.  But Google will pick your desktop version of your site instead of mobile-first index by default.

It was reported by Jennifer Slegg that Maile Ohye From Google said this at the State ofSearch conference:

 


Barry Schwartz found this surprising, and in turn, asked Gary Illyes from Google about it.  Gary then confirmed it on Twitter:


He also said that he hadn’t seen a case where a site had AMP and did not also have a mobile version:


It does seem strange that Google would decide to pick the desktop version over AMP, but in a number of cases, there is no real site navigation to crawl the website.  From the side of indexing, this would make sense.

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