What is Mobile Optimization?
SEO optimization refers to changes made to the content of your site, advertisements, social media, etc., for improving the site’s search engine ranking. Mobile optimization is the process of ensuring that visitors enjoy an engaging and user-friendly experience when they access your website from a mobile device.
It is essential for brands to have a mobile-friendly website design. But for increased conversion, online retailers must also meet the demands of digital transformation and ensure that their sites are optimized for mobile. When content is optimized, it easily flows between desktop and mobile devices and gives users an experience that is customized for their device.
For instance, if you head to Amazon’s website, the site is functional and easy to use regardless of whether you access it from your iPad, PC, Android phone, or any other device. The tech team at Amazon ensures that they optimize the website for mobile so that no sale is missed out due to platform preference.
Why is mobile optimization important?
The number of people using mobile devices to surf the web is increasing at a fast pace. Many studies indicate that more people are using mobile phones for internet searches as compared to computer users. Therefore, if you have a website, you must optimize it for use on mobile phones. If your website is not optimized, it can be detrimental to your marketing efforts.
Retailers must evaluate the mobile purchasing experience to ensure it is smooth and seamless. It requires evaluation of all online touchpoints, with mobile playing a vital role in converting users into buyers.
Mobile Optimization Best Practices
1. Optimize Your Above the Fold Content.
For a mobile-friendly website design, you must have a little bit of text content above the fold. It encourages users to scroll to the next section of the website.
The psychological desires and benefits of seeing what you are offering are not dead yet. As a result, you need to optimize the content on several different mobile devices. By optimizing the above-the-fold content, you can hook visitors and make them stay on your website for longer.
2. Don’t Only Focus on Mobile Users
With the merger of desktop and mobile, the desires and goals of platform users also merge. Focusing on your user’s wishes based on the platform leads to a holistic approach that helps in reaching customers more effectively.
A user may be buying a product or researching the services you offer. But a focus on the mix of user goals and client acquisitions of the business will persist. With a blend of mobile and desktop, the need to focus specifically on these ideals and values will reduce.
3. Responsive Design
Today, independent m-dot websites are no longer in use. The structure of an m-dot website can be very messy, where multiple URLs create duplicate content issues in the absence of proper optimization.
Many techniques help in completing an effective transition. But, m-dot implementations are a thing of the past with the introduction of new technologies. Nowadays, the right implementation to create a website for the mobile involves a responsive design. To define the display resolutions supporting the design, these designs use media queries.
Each resolution is called a “breakpoint.” It refers to the point where the responsive design changes from one resolution to another. With a responsive design and its structure, you do not face any duplicate content concerns that exist on m-dot implementation. Moreover, the design ensures that your website’s mobile execution will be on the newest technology.
4. Focus on Site Speed
Is there a need for a two-color background? Does the 5 pixels wide by 1500 pixels high repetitive background add visual appeal? If not, and there is an option to code it instead, please do. The effort might be small, without much impact on site speed, but such optimizations can collectively help to improve the overall speed.
In your next website audit or when creating a website, ask yourself – “Is there a need to have this image here, or simply coding it is a good idea?” If the image isn’t extremely vital, you can increase the site’s speed significantly by coding the object. It is more so on sites whose designs have an overabundance of graphics.
5. Customize WordPress
WordPress offers many plug-ins. A plug-in that helps to improve mobile compatibility is also available. W3 Total Cache and DudaMobile are very useful plug-ins in this regard. Some other plug-ins help in minimizing CSS and HTML. Use these plug-ins to improve your WordPress SEO.
6. Avoid duplicate content and cloaking.
The content in the desktop version of your site should be the same as your mobile. One of the best ways to achieve this is by using a responsive design. For a responsive design, developers create a style sheet using media queries to automatically transition designs between several devices and platforms.
You can further make your design lean and mean by using CSS Sprites. CSS Sprites allow you to combine multiple images into a single image file and help you squeeze out all possible site speed.
7. Image Optimization
Good images enhance the aesthetics of a site. They also make it easier for the website visitor to go through your content. Images are beneficial for mobile SEO, as well. However, a popular worry with the use of images is that it slows the speed of the website. Therefore, you must update your image optimization strategy and utilize tools to bring in the new system.
The popularity of images is growing fast. If you don’t ride on this growth, it can get difficult to meet the speed demands of consumers and Google.
Start by sizing your images correctly. A large image requires more bandwidth compared to a smaller image. If there is the option of using a smaller image on your website, use it. Next, compress the images. The human eye cannot perceive subtle differences in an image. So, you can safely use a lower quality level.
8. Avoid Using Intrusive Interstitials
Every brand loves its product and believes that it is the greatest. However, when a consumer visits your website to research before purchase, don’t give out an intrusive ad that blocks their activity. Don’t irritate the user on the sale and intrude on their experience throughout your site.
Have minimum intrusive interstitials. Place the ads at the bottom or on the side. Give website visitors an option to click on the ad and close it. You must also know that Google penalizes intrusive interstitials. Read their developer guides and webmaster guidelines on this aspect to avoid any issues.
9. Check for Errors
Identify the weaknesses of your website. These weaknesses don’t concern site speed only. They also relate to issues with the implementation on different platforms and displays. If the client spots implementation issues at the final stage that you should have seen during development, it isn’t appreciable.
10. Don’t Use Flash Video.
Flash videos are dead, yet many sites continue to use them. Flash video became extinct when Adobe introduced Macromedia and discontinued it to make way for HTML 5 videos. You could be giving your users a frustrating experience if you don’t have at least one HTML 5 video on your site.
11. Structured Data
Schema markup helps in identifying pages with special, structured information on your site. There are hundreds of different tags for you to choose and use for marking content on your site. A property structured schema markup is better interpreted by Google and has increased chances of appearing in search results.
Moreover, when the mobile index comes into full play, dependency on Schema increases. Using schema.org structured data is a method to understand information that can be converted into rich snippets in the mobile search results.
If you wish, you can also use Schema structured data on desktop implementations. It can help in improving your site visibility with the correct implementation.
12. Make Sure that Supporting Scripts Are Not Blocked
Restricting Google from crawling these files doesn’t let it see that your website is functioning correctly. When the search engine is unable to do so, your website has lower rankings. It is because Google is unable to understand your website.
With the introduction of Google’s mobile-first index, it is crucial to have a cross-device, cross-compatible, and cross-platform website. If you don’t take action promptly and delay the process of mobile optimization, it will cost you in many ways. When you develop a mobile-optimized website, remember to test changes regularly.
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