In the wake of yet another Google algorithm change, aptly named Mobilegeddon, geared at prioritizing mobile-friendly sites in mobile searches and restricting those deemed mobile-unfriendly; you may be wondering just how important is mobile optimization to small business?
While the statistics on the impact of Mobilegeddon aren’t catastrophic; RKG Merkle reports 45 percent of the Fortune 500 companies and 29 percent of Internet retail sites were affected by the update, there are elements of mobile SEO that cannot be ignored, especially for the small business owner.
- First and foremost, your website must be mobile responsive.
What does this mean and why?
It means that the information on your website, pages and posts translates to a user-friendly, visually appealing site across any device-desktop, smartphone, tablet or laptop.
Why? More and more people are accessing websites and information from their mobile devices over desktop computers.
- Mobile is not going away.
In fact, mobile usages is increasing at an incredible rate with no signs of slowing down.
Here are some statistics courtesy of SmartInsights.com:
- 1/2 of all local searches are performed on mobile devices
- 50% of the average global mobile users now use mobile as either their primary or exclusive means of online search.
- 57% of users say they won’t recommend a business with poorly designed mobile site.
- You only get one chance to make a first impression, even if it is on a mobile phone.
People will judge your business credibility based on their user experience. If the site does not translate well across devices to look appealing, with easy navigation, allowing them to get the information they are searching for or perform the necessary task, your business is diminished in their eyes and they may not ever return.
- Mobile responsive websites can boost search engine rankings.
It is a Google world, in the light of Mobilegeddon, Googles latest algorithm favoring mobile optimized sites, it stands to reason that having a mobile responsive site will improve your search engine rankings and not having one will hurt it.
- Optimize your Landing Pages for Mobile.
While you are optimizing your website to be mobile responsive, you can’t forget the landing pages. If most people are performing their searches using mobile devices, then you want your landing pages to translate well, and continue to be relevant for the mobile searcher.
- The SEO of It-Mobile SEO
You have to think of the mobile device like its own website. It has different parameters for size and ability, but is just as important as your website and in need of optimization. Think about what the user is doing and what problem they are trying to solve from their phone. Is it a quick search for a restaurant while in the car, or very likely a social app in use? They are on the go, moving fast and most likely doing 5 things at once. Make the site experience easy, fast and fun.
- Site needs to load quickly
As we have established, the mobile user is busy, on-the-go, doing 5 things at once and wants to get information and complete tasks on the phone easily and quickly.
Best practices to ensure your site is running optimally for mobile loading are:
- Avoid Flash –use HTML 5 instead.
- Avoid pop-ups.
- Design with swiping motions and finger taps in mind.
- Provide concise text, as there is much less room on the phone.
- Consider shorter titles and focused meta-descriptions.
Now that you have a few tips and tricks to work with, I would set to making your customers’ mobile user experience top notch. I would venture to say it may be more important to your small business success than your desktop friendly website. With over half of searches being conducted on mobile devices, it is essential to optimize your site for mobile search. The future of mobile speaks only of its continued use and evolution.