Smartphones are a part of everyday life. You are probably reading this on your phone right now. You also probably do a ton of research, planning, and life-managing on it too. Gone are the days of T9 and 2D video games; people are now working, recipe building, blogging, doom scrolling, paying bills, and shopping all from their mobile devices.
Your Mobile SEO Strategy Can’t be Ignored
In the last year alone over 40% of online transactions happened on a smartphone. The online shopper is now shopping 67% more percent than they used to and with the development of technology, this number is only set to skyrocket (Thank you Pandemic). What this means for your business is that you need to prioritize your mobile web experience if you expect to be competitive.
Why is Mobile SEO Important?
It all comes down to customer satisfaction. The goal of mobile SEO is to keep users satisfied while navigating through your website, regardless of the size of the screen they’re using. It also means that you have to optimize for how people engage with your content on these smaller screens.
In March 2021, Google fully rolled out a new algorithm update that focuses on mobile content. If the content is not visible on the mobile version of a webpage, then it will not be considered for indexing. You can continue to show more content on your desktop site, but it won’t factor into how your site ranks in Google.
How to ensure that your website is Mobile-Friendly
Actually Visit Your Website using a Smartphone
This will give a clear idea of what your visitors are seeing when they get to your website. Here you will be able to assess if the important information is front and centre. You should also be able to easily navigate to other sections of your site.
GSC Mobile Usability
If you have Google Search Console set up (get it here if you don’t) you can visit the Mobile Usability tab. Here you can find everything that Google has flagged as an issue with regard to your mobile experience. You can also visit the mobile testing page to verify any webpage on your site.
Once you are all up to speed, use these 5 proven methods to help optimize your website for a mobile-friendly experience.
1. Improve Your Website’s Loading Time
Response time is everything when keeping users engaged on your page. 47 percent of consumers expect a webpage to load in two seconds or less. For every second a user has to wait for your content to load, your conversion rate drops by an average of 4.42%. And that is only if it loads within the first five seconds.
Shameless plug: Download our free speedpage tool to find your site’s biggest offender.
2. Create Mobile-Friendly Content
This means getting a good understanding of how people read content online. Generally speaking, people scan web content until they find what they are looking for. Long, extensive, and wordy articles are shown to have a lower comprehensibility rate when read on mobile.
This means that keeping your content easy to read, scannable, and blocked makes the user experience more enjoyable.
Some things to consider when creating mobile-friendly content are:
Content length: length and readability are directly correlated to how much time people spend on a page. Short sentences are easier to understand. Here’s a list of 50 Plain Language Substitutes for Wordy Phrases.
Collapsible/Expandable Content: Not all of your content needs to be visible This refers to content that has been hidden by tabs, accordions, and expand buttons. One example of where you would see these are on FAQ pages. These are used to organize information in a concise way, giving the user an option as to whether or not they want to read more without having huge boxes of text to scroll through.
Use Headers and Lists to break up content: Start each section with an appropriately titled header. Make it clear what the reader will find here. Lists are another simple way to slow the reader while they scroll. And be sure to keep your paragraphs short and concise.
3. Optimize Site Design For Mobile
When designing your website for mobile ensure that text is easy to read, your photos are appropriately placed and your mobile experience is easy.
Some things to keep in mind when you are designing for mobile:
Avoid using pop-ups: These can be difficult and frustrating to try and close on a mobile device. So much so that Google has put a ban on interstitials that ruin the user experience. Any site found guilty of displaying intrusive pop-ups will see its content demoted in the search results.
Cater to fat fingers: Our fingers come in all shapes and sizes and we need to consider those with wider thumbs. Websites that have buttons that are too large, too small, or run in the middle of scrolls can be frustrating to navigate. Keep them mid-size, tidy, and consider their placement.
Ensure that your website design is simple. People hate having to zoom or pinch their screens to adjust sizing. Ensure your website buttons, banners, images, and text are all formatted and sized correctly.
4. Focus on the Mobile User Experience
When it comes to user experience simplicity is everything. So put your most pertinent information front and centre. Making phone numbers and email addresses clickable provide an easy way for visitors to reach you.
Make your call to action obvious. With the goal of getting more conversion or providing quick information ensure that “buy now”, “subscribe” or “get a quote” buttons stand out.
Use your images wisely. Images are great on desktop-friendly websites, but be aware of how these affect loading times on mobile sites.
5. Optimize Title Tags and Meta Descriptions
Less screen space means having to get creative with your Title Tags and Meta Descriptions. To show off your prize work in the SERPS be as concise as possible.
You don’t want to sacrifice the quality of information you just want to be snappy and short when creating URLs, titles, and meta descriptions.
The Long and the Short of It
When thinking about your mobile SEO strategy, it’s important to think about how the search intent is different than on desktop. These micro-moments play a big role in the search results. Optimizing for quick answers will have a lasting impact on your SEO.