Maybe you heard the latest news, or maybe you logged onto your computer and something seemed a little, well different. Or, if you are like us, you are a proud SEO nerd that tracks Google’s changes like a kid counts down to Santa Claus. Either way, you may know that Google has majorly changed its logo for the first time since the last millennium. But, do you know what this change means and why this is such a big deal? Since we are proud SEO nerds, let us tell you.
So, a couple of days ago Google revamped its iconic logo; simplifying the design and ditching the serifs on the text. For those of you unfamiliar with font design, serifs are a big deal. Most of the text you read in the newspaper (those primitive news devices that were once delivered to your home, before we all got tablets) has a serif. It is a tiny decorative line attached to the edges of the letters. They help your eyes with readability when there is a lot of text. Serifs are particularly helpful for books, newspapers or other really wordy items. They are not ideal for reading on a screen however, especially not a smaller screen.
That is the first big indicator that this new logo is more than just a little branding tweak. Google is up to big things, and they want their logo to reflect their goals. Think we’re reading too much into the news? Let’s think about the serif and the new san-serif font that Google used for their logo. As we said, serifs are not great for smaller screens. They are not particularly scalable because of this, so Google’s old logo didn’t really shrink well. The G is indistinguishable from a C or the L gets confused for an i. That is a big problem as technologies move from tablets, to smart phones, to smart watches. Serifs also eat up bandwidth, not a ton, mind you. But in areas with poor connections or low-bandwidth the old Google logo was slightly modified, subtly altering the brand. In changing to a san-serif logo, Google is able to present a consistent and scalable logo that looks the same on any screen with any bandwidth.
The new logo is multifunctional as well. On smaller screens, like mobile phones, the new logo is replaced with a four color G. Those using voice search will notice that the logo morphs into four colored dots which act as an equalizer as the user speaks.
In a nutshell this tells us that the future for Google, and technology in general is in mobile. All of these changes are meant to enhance the brand and keep it consistent as tech becomes smaller, more ubiquitous and more portable. This indicates that Google is focused on moving into emerging markets where technology and bandwidth has room for growth. It shows that Google has a keen eye on wearables and will continue to design to dominate as new technologies roll out.
Still not convinced, you can take it straight from Google in the video at the bottom. Or, you can look at Google’s newest announcement in which the search giant indicates it will penalize pop-up advertisers on it mobile search engine. Google views this as a major frustration for those searching on mobile devices and is a huge detriment to the overall user experience. Coupled with the latest algorithm update, which will rank mobile optimizes sites higher than their web-only counterparts, it signals that Google’s priorities are becoming very mobile friendly.
The takeaway for the average business owner is clear; if your site isn’t mobile friendly than you are doing your brand a huge disservice. If your brand isn’t prepared to meet your customers on any size screen, you might just get left behind.