Ever since the ‘Mobilegeddon’ Google update rolled out in 2015, Mobile SEO has been all the rage in digital marketing circles. Its importance stems from the fact that a majority of web users today use their mobiles instead of desktops to search. For businesses of all sizes, this fact is important to consider. Because they need to decide which device platform to optimize for. Depending on the gadgets preferred by their targeted consumer-base. A broad-spanning internet provision like HughesNet satellite internet is also crucial. Both for customers, as well as the business engaged in the ‘targeting’ work.
At the outset of this piece, you should also know that mobile SEO is different than standard desktop website optimization.
Catering to a Mobile World
Everyone knows that we live in a mobile world. One in which people simply don’t have time. To see to either their personal or professional obligations. So sitting in front of a PC, other than when you’re in office, mostly becomes a big ‘no no’. Mobile internet provides the perfect solution to this new-age dilemma. And in order to ease users’ mobile surfing experiences, search engines were quick to adapt.
The Mobilegeddon update aimed to give mobile-optimized sites a boost in Google rankings. Meaning that these sites appeared in the top search result positions for particular keywords.
At the beginning of January, Google formally announced its intention to rev-up mobile-optimized sites in its search listings. This was a ‘call to improvement’ for many digital marketers. Because it prompted them to instantly start tweaking their client sites for mobile viewing.
When you look at the internet today, this effort by Google seems to have paid off. Because the first thing that webmasters do nowadays is to tweak their websites for mobile viewing.
Mobile SEO Tips for Gaining Good Rankings
One of the best ways for getting a good mobile audit report for your site is to pass it through Google’s Mobile-Friendly Test Tool. You can easily load it up through your Google Webmaster account. Within a few seconds, it instantly gives you a detailed report on the areas that need improvement.
Other than this neat little trick, you can do the following:
- Use the AMP (Accelerated Mobile Pages) Code
- Play Around with a ‘Responsive’ Website Design
- Limit Meta-Descriptions and Page Title Counts
- Get Rid of Annoying Pop-Ups
- Go Heavy on Cache
- Keep a Check on User Traffic Behavior
- Tweak for Local Search
I’ve elaborated on each of these tips briefly below.
AMP is another one of Google’s neat front-end offerings. By adding the AMP code to your site’s HTML page, you can create a lighter copy of your web pages. These are then loaded quickly on all kinds of mobile devices.
AMP does not have any direct bearing on a site’s rankings. But in the long-run, and combined with other factors, it greatly improves the user experience. And potentially SEO as well. So if you haven’t yet made use of this feature, then act quickly. Before your competition gets the best of you.
Opt For a Responsive Design
Google recommends opting for a responsive design, instead of (only) a mobile-friendly one. A responsive layout is perfect or any screen size, and any device. This makes it easy to load your website on desktop PCs, mobile phones and portable music players. Without compromising on your screen size and integrity.
Opting for a responsive design, no matter how you look at it, makes a lot of sense!
Shorten MD’s and Page Titles
For mobile viewing, Google recommends limiting character counts of the usual page elements. For the perfect meta-description, go for a max length of 130 characters. With spaces, of course. Although the search
For page titles, a max length of 60 characters is good.
The reasoning behind these instructions is not hard to understand. Mobile screen sizes are small, and so it becomes difficult to view lengthy phrases on them without scrolling.
If you stick to a large character count in these places, you are bound to suffer from Google’s ‘splicing’. The fewer the words, the better…
Get Rid of Pop-Ups
In January 2017, Google made it pretty clear that ad pop-ups aren’t good. Because they become a barrier between websites and surfers. Something which increases the site’s bounce rate (the time in which a person leaves a page). This directly hurts the site’s rankings, and hence SEO.
Google has been known to lower site rankings because of these intrusive marketing gimmicks. So if you still think that their use is alright from the sales perspective, then think again. And get rid of them while you still have the time.
This browser feature lessens website loading times. Because the device doesn’t have to load heavy graphics again & again.
Keep a Look Out for Changing Traffic Behavior
And especially those cues which tell you that your target audience is shifting to a different device. Than the one which you optimized your site for.
Keep Local Search in Mind
Optimizing your website for local search is important. Once when I was searching for high speed internet providers in my area, I came across something strange. A lot of the search results pointed to ISP companies that were operating from the East Coast. Where I lived in Los Angeles. This problem was corrected with the introduction of satellite features in smartphones after 2010.