Look, I get it. Website redesigns suck. They’re time consuming, they’re costly, and they can result in a drop in traffic if you alienate old users with a new design they don’t know how to use. Why bother with a redesign when you don’t have to?
At this point, however, when SEO pros and marketers tell you that a mobile site is crucial, they mean it. Up until last year, mobile was just a suggestion. A really good suggestion, sure, but just a suggestion. Mobile users are somewhat used to browsing desktop sites on their devices, using the built-in zoom features. A decently designed desktop site was at least usable, if not particularly pleasant.
Not having a mobile site, then, was a hindrance but not a massive flaw. You might lose some percentage of your potential users when they land on your page and realize they have to navigate a desktop site using a phone, but others would stick around. You could power through it.
Now, though, you’re going to suffer more for it. The question posed in the title here is whether or not lacking a mobile site will hurt your SEO. As of late 2014 and early 2015, Google has started to actively promote mobile sites to mobile users. They introduced the Mobile-Frie…