Are you still stuck in a desktop-only mindset when it comes to SEO for your website? If so, then it is time to change your strategy.
Mobile search users surpassed desktop search users last year, making mobile searches now the top way that consumers are finding your business online. What that means for your company is that using the right SEO strategies for mobile search are of the highest priority in order to continue to grow your business. Desktop SEO and mobile SEO tactics are very different, but employing both is important if you want to optimize your user experience for everyone who visits your website.
Studies show that 80% of adults around the world now own smartphones and use them to search online from any location that has cell service or Wi-Fi. However, many companies have not optimized their websites correctly for mobile search.
A major component of mobile optimization is creating a mobile responsive website. Responsive web design features coding that can respond to any device by displaying the page content configuration best fit for their device screen size and resolution. There is no need to design a separate mobile-only website; in fact, Google announced earlier this year that their mobile search algorithm will employ positive ranking signals for mobile-friendly websites.
SEO Strategies for Mobile Users
While you should continue to optimize for both mobile and desktop, you should focus on mobile first for certain SEO opportunities. You can do this by including some of these features in your marketing strategy:
- Make your website mobile responsive. Google recommends webmasters follow the industry best practice of using responsive web design.
- Create a mobile app. Apps make it easy for mobile customers to connect with your brand and you can easily set up conversion tracking to analyze the success of your mobile campaigns.
- Add an option for mobile payments. A positive user experience is created by offering convenience to your customers. If you are a retailer, considering adding ecommerce into your business strategy. If you offer any kind of service, give consumers the option to pay their invoice or bill online.
- Create a mobile loyalty program. QR codes, social media promotions, and mobile-only coupons are a great way to encourage mobile engagement with your brand.
- Make your email marketing mobile-friendly. Ensure that your email blasts are optimized for mobile users by employing responsive design templates.
- Perform a mobile SEO audit. Cut down on performance problems by auditing your website for on-site and on-page UX (user experience) issues. You can consult an Internet marketing firm for a detailed website analysis.
Google-Friendly Mobile SEO Tactics
It is important to ensure that Google can easily crawl your website for better translation into their mobile search algorithm. You can test this feature by using Google’s Fetch tool in the Webmaster Tools platform. For optimal effectiveness with today’s mobile user, design your website using HTML5 coding standards and only add mobile-friendly elements to your site, including videos, images, and calls-to-action.
Make the following design changes to help distinguish your website for mobile over desktop search:
- Add the meta name=”viewport” tag to inform the device’s browser how to adjust the content
- Use the “vary http header” for dynamic serving on the same URL
- Test your robots.txt in Google Webmaster Tools
- Fix redirect or cross linking errors
- Utilize rich snippets and schema
- Avoid installing pop-ups
- Use mobile-only URLs or ensure that dynamic URLs work on mobile
Optimizing Site Speed
While your website’s loading speed is definitely important for desktop users, for mobile users, it is even more crucial. This is due to the fact that mobile devices experience changing service speeds. If your site is slow to start, then mobile users will be apt to bounce and choose a faster site rather than wait for your site to load. Use Google Page Speed Insights to test your site speed and make needed changes as soon as possible.
If you need help performing a mobile audit for your website, or you would like more personalized SEO strategies for mobile users of your website, contact the experts at Scale.