One of the benefits of the new Google Search Console has been an increase in communication from Google and the notification of issues which might be affecting a sites performance by email. One of the drawbacks of this, however, can be that some of these messages can freak you out. If you have a Google Search Console account, you may have noticed Strange Mobile Usability Issues Reports emails with the subject line New Mobile Usability issues detected for site https://www.yoursite.com – Message Type:[WNC-10030322], we’ve had messages for around 20 of our SEO client sites, so I would guess that the chances that you’ve had one are quite high.
Whilst some of these are valid, where a site has genuine mobile usability issues, what has perplexed me is that in a lot of the cases, Google Search Console is showing that the mobile usability affects only a small number of, seemingly random, pages. These pages use exactly the same design or template as lots of other pages on the site, which are all apparently fine and do not fall foul of the mobile usability issues that GSC as detected. The pages look fine visually and when you test them in the Google Mobile-Friendly Test they show as Mobile Friendly.
What we have been doing over the past few months is checking all of these issues out and, if we are confident, submitting a Validate Fix request. In most cases these are validated, although we have had some failures.
Whilst at Brighton SEO, I took the opportunity to ask John Mueller Google’s Webmaster Trends Analyst for his take on it. What he said was that it is likely that Google’s bot encountered a momentary issue with the page when it crawled the page, hence the report, however if the page looks visually ok and if you can also run the mobile friendly test and the page checks out, then it should just be one of those things and these Strange Mobile Usability Issues Reports are nothing to worry about.