What is Mobile Optimization?

19 Mar, 2021

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After discussing how you can attract customers to your business using Google Ads, Local SEO, Off-Page SEO, Social Media, etc.We want to discuss the devices your visitors might use when visiting your website. 

Visitors don’t only visit your site via desktop. It is likely that  at least half of them will be visiting your website using mobile devices (smartphones and tablets).  When they enter your site you have extremely long paragraphs to read, sidebars for offers that when placed in a mobile size screen might distract the user, etc. The visitor might decide to abandon your website and move on. To solve this problem, you need to work on optimizing your website for mobile users. These days Mobile optimization is particularly important because Google now gives mobile websites priority (Mobile-First-Indexing). Since July 1, 2019, Google prioritises mobile websites — due to the increase in searches being made from mobile devices and mobile first indexing, 

Mobile-First Indexing is already having a big impact online and it’s going to be even more influential in the future. Every business that wishes to get top rankings on the first page of search results should definitely have it in mind.
Thanks to mobile optimization, you can make sure that when the Google bots visit your mobile website, they can display it properly. 

 

What is Mobile Optimization?

Times have changed, now, more than ever,  many people surf the internet using mobile devices much more than desktop computers. Unfortunately, not all websites are optimized to be able to provide the best experience possible to their visitors. What they lack is mobile optimization, the process of adapting the design of a website for mobile searches: optimizing its structure, improving the page speed, and much more. A mobile website is not a summary of the website... 

“A mobile website is a reinvention of the website so that it matches the platform in which it’s going to be displayed.”

Mobile devices have a smaller screen and can take longer to load pages and media content. It’s important to have a website that’s as light as possible for mobile devices to be able to load it without missing out on the user-friendly experience visitors need to have.

Remember mobile-friendliness is a ranking factor for Google so having a website that’s optimized for mobile is important.

Why is mobile optimization important?

Like we mentioned earlier mobile has become more and more relevant. Different studies have shown that 57% of all online traffic comes from mobile devices. Depending on the target audience, between 15-70% of emails are opened using a mobile device, 

People spend more time on their mobile devices than they do on laptops or desktops.

Accessing a website from mobile is a different experience than what you get from the desktop. If you have a mobile version of your website that has tiny buttons and links, long paragraphs, and the need to scroll endlessly, you might discover that many visitors will tend to abandon your website as they find it too frustrating to use.

If a customer has to work harder than necessary to achieve a goal, he or she feels friction. It makes that customer want to avoid the experience entirely.

Mobile optimization takes into account: site design, site structure, page speed, and much more to make sure your website doesn’t turn away mobile visitors.

How do you do Mobile Optimization?

Some elements make all the difference in mobile optimization:

  • Larger buttons
  • Smaller images
  • Auto-fill form fields
  • Auto-detect location settings
  • Guest checkout option

But how do you apply all this effectively? 

Here’s how:

  1. Have a responsive web design: You might have noticed that many CMS offer what we refer to in rankingCoach as a mobile-friendly feature. This is what marketers call responsive web design and automatically adapts your content to mobile screens so that visitors can view your website properly. While this is a good initial step, it’s only the beginning of what you need to do to optimize your website for mobile. You can also set a unique URL dedicated to your mobile website to differentiate it from your main site. Let’s not forget that your buttons need to stay big enough to be tapped from a mobile device or it won’t be possible to navigate your website.
  2. Make your content scrollable: One good way to make your website more mobile-friendly is to not force your visitors to click through multiple pages but instead to allow them to scroll down to see your content. It’s a simple step but a very effective one. Just don’t overdo it!
  3. Always compress your images: your images can slow your website down if they are too big (In terms of bytes) That’s more true when it comes to mobile websites, since surfing from mobile is not as fast as from desktop it’s important that your website loads quickly. To make sure it does you need to compress your images. It’s not enough to resize them, you need to make the file size smaller. 
  4. Remove features that are not mobile-friendly: If when you're creating your mobile-optimized website, you realize that you have elements that are not essential, remove them. The goal is to create a mobile website that can portray your business in the best possible way. On desktop, you can add sidebars that promote your products and services but on mobile, you don’t always have all the space to place them. They might create confusion.
  5. Add Amp: Accelerated Mobile Pages (AMP) is the mobile-optimized version of your website. An AMP will change the look and feel of your website when it’s displayed on mobile devices. You can customize your AMP and personalize the look of your website when it’s displayed on mobile devices so that it will match your brand identity. AMP websites load very quickly, improving the overall experience for your visitors.
  6. Add videos: Optimise your videos, place videos on your website that are uploaded in an online video platform (like YouTube for example) this will ensure that your video will not impact the loading speed of your website. You can have a video showcasing your products, a commercial, and much more.
  7. Never use Flash: Remember that neither Android nor iPhone operating systems support Flash. If you have Flash elements in your website the loading speed of your website will drop and often some elements will not be loaded at all.
  8. Don’t use long paragraphs: People are often in a hurry so a long paragraph will quickly lose their attention. Keep it short and use media elements to make your content easier to digest.
  9. Keep in mind why people visit your website: If you know that people would usually visit your website for a particular product or service make sure they can find it easily. Keep in mind what they need from you and place it in an easy-to-reach place on your website such as in the top menu bar. 

 

Where to start with your mobile optimization

To start, visit your website from your cell phone and check how it looks. Then go to your CMS, like we mentioned earlier, your CMS will most likely offer features that allow you to add a responsive web design to your site. If you don’t know where to find it check our task on how to make your website mobile-friendly in rankingCoach. We offer a guide customized for every major CMS used.

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