Google, YouTube, Shopify, and many other major platforms are reporting that at least 50 percent of their traffic comes from mobile devices. It only make sense, as we live in a day where our phones are always just a finger tip away at all times. But with that stated, is your website truly optimized to receive this traffic? Or are you simply missing out?
As of April 21, 2015, Google incorporated “mobile friendliness” to its mobile search rankings criteria. Also, since a first page ranking statistically receives over 90 percent of all organic traffic, you want to make sure you are not taking a hit in the mobile search rankings because you don’t meet their simple prerequisites. To ensure your website is ready to take advantage of every opportunity, here are a few key steps that must be implemented with the creation of mobile website.
Listen to Google
As the search engine leader for the better part of two decades, when Google gives advice on how to make your site more visible — you’d be wise to pay attention. When it comes to the list that Google has put together for developers to follow, having a responsive website design is listed number one. A responsive design allows a website to automatically resize to correctly fit the viewer’s device, whether it be desktop, tablet, or phone. Without a responsive web design, your sight may look great on your desktop, but when a customer views it on a tablet or smartphone, the dimensions could be so far off it forces users to leave your site and search for the information elsewhere. You must check both your desktop and mobile version to ensure all of your content is actually accessible.
Out of Order
Now more than ever, search engines are putting user experience at the forefront in their rankings criteria. If you have videos on your site, make sure they are playing on the mobile version of your site. They might be working perfectly on your desktop, but could show an error on your mobile version. This problem can be often found with YouTube videos that have unauthorized third party music. A removal of the song or, in some cases, having YouTube review the video under “fair use under copyright law” can have your video back up and running in no time.
Another problem that can penalize your site is faulty redirects. A common example of this is when users are redirected to your mobile home page … no matter what page they originally tried to visit. If you log on to your contact page, and it automatically sends you to your home page, and you know you have a contact page created, you probably have a redirect issue. So as silly as it may sound, make sure all of your mobile pages are directing to correct URLs.
You are running through your checklist and your site is up, it looks good, and hosts a wealth of information … you think everything is all set. Right? With that stated, have you checked how fast your site is running? If you have a slow page load time, your site is as good as dead. KissMetrics.com, a popular analytics blog, breaks it down quite clearly, “A [one] second delay in page response can result in a 7 percent reduction in conversions.” So every second really does count. Being able to pick up a smartphone and immediately have a search result appear is a big part in having a smartphone in the first place. If your mobile site can’t deliver quickly, it may be left in the past. Large images, a slow server, and bulky code are a few items that may need to be addressed.
Lastly, beware. Don’t entrust your website to just anyone. Any person with Dreamweaver or a little WordPress knowledge can build you a website. Make sure before you contract someone to build or rebuild your site there is a clear path on how it will be optimized for mobile use. If they are using too many buzzwords, ask them to break it down so you can truly understand. This is a good way of seeing how knowledgeable and helpful they are versus those who simply are flying by what they’ve been able to pull from a YouTube How-To video. If they do not hit the first three points on this list, then they might not be the right designer for the job.
If you are looking to build a better web site, or need help with inbound marketing or advertising at any level, contact DS Media Today.
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