Optimizing for the Mobile Web by Cory Bosket on 02/02/2015 Across the web, marketers and SEOs are abuzz with news that 2015 will be the year that the mobile web overtakes its desktop counterpart. For years, the marketing world has known that the mobile web would one day surpass desktop Internet usage, but most failed to realize just how large the mobile revolution would be. However, all that has changed, as even Google has now taken notice by launching their Mobile-Friendly Test tool and labeling sites as mobile friendly on mobile SERPs. Over the course of 2015 smartphone and tablet usage across the globe is expected to exceed 2 billion, is your site prepared for the mobile revolution? The Rise of the Mobile Web The average smartphone user engages with their phone an upwards of 200 times per day. The average smartphone user engages with their phone an upwards of 200 times per day. If that stat alone isn’t enough to demonstrate the importance of mobile compatibility, consider this – over half of all mobile searches lead to a purchase. The mobile web has had a steady rise throughout the years as more and more people purchased smartphones. Nowadays, it seems we can hardly put our phone’s down. Consumers are turning to their mobile devices like never before, using them to locate goods & services, check their email, browse the web and so much more. With millions of mobile apps available, mobile users have the world at their fingertips. Google Takes Notice Back in November, Google launched a new feature to their Webmaster Tools platform that allows users to test the mobile compatibility of their site. The new tool awards users a Pass or Fail grade depending on their site’s mobile performance. Shortly after, Google began labeling sites as “Mobile-Friendly: within their mobile search results, experimenting with a new special ranking algorithm to reward sites that could perform on the mobile platform. Continuing their actions on the mobile front, in early January Google began sending mass notifications to webmasters across the country warning them that their site was not optimized for mobile performance. The suddenness of the notifications has been interpreted by many as a strong sign that Google will continue to push the importance of mobile compatibility for websites, and even begin penalizing sites that aren’t primed to perform on the mobile platform. Steps Towards Mobile Optimization Taking the time to make sure your website is primed to perform on the mobile web may make or break your business’s success in the new year. One of the best ways to get started is by checking out Google’s guide to mobile-friendly web design. Additionally, use Google’s Mobile-Friendly Test to make sure your website: Avoids software that isn’t compatible with mobile devices Has responsive design to adjust text size and layout to fit on a mobile screen Spaces links and buttons so they can be easily selected Your website’s mobile usability report will help you identify pages that hinder your site’s mobile performance, providing you with steps on how to fix the problem. Another factor that will have a direct impact on your website’s mobile usability is its page load speeds. In today’s fast-paced world, many mobile users won’t tolerate a site that has a slow load time. Make sure your mobile website is the fast, efficient solution your customers are looking for with Google’s PageSpeed Insights tool. This tool will test the page load time and appearance of your URL on a mobile platform, providing you with in-depth information on what you should consider fixing to enhance the mobile user experience. Performing on a Mobile Platform If the early predictions of search engine marketers and experts prove to be true, 2015 will be a big year for the mobile web. If you’re looking to expand your SEO strategy, look towards capitalizing on the mobile movement. One of the biggest mistake you can make as a webmaster is failing to create a unique, mobile experience for your site. Make the most out of your mobile site’s user experience by streamlining the layout and information. Tools like Screenfly, by QuirkTools, can help test your site’s responsive screen design, providing you with a visual of your site’s layout on desktops, tablets, mobile phones, TV screens and any other sized screen you can think of. Screenfly even allows you to click through the site, allowing you to gain a better sense of the spacing on your site. Another area of the mobile optimization that you should focus on is the accessibility of your site. Create a checklist of actions that you want mobile users to take on your site, and make sure each can be easily achieved. Making sure that mobile users can easily access the information they need on your mobile site will help you increase your conversions. Finally, you should focus on capturing a local market with your mobile optimization. Over 90% of smartphone users have searched for local information, and over half of these mobile users visited a store after their search. Giving your phone a mobile presence can help put your business front and center, attracting a whole new audience to your brand. Optimizing for the mobile web just may make or break your company’s bottom line for the new year. Don’t get left behind the mobile revolution and contact the Pittsburgh web design consultation team at Eyeflow. With years of experience helping all sorts of clients big and small, Eyeflow helps your company redefine the user experience across your website, identifying areas where your website is underperforming and transforming your mobile website into an all-encompassing mobile experience. Don’t let faulty design and a clunky appearance steer customers away from your brand, give your mobile web experience new life by contacting Eyeflow today! Share the Love Related posts: Mobile SEO and Responsive Web Design Making Your Website Mobile-Friendly Optimizing for Google Places, Part 1 Optimizing On-Page Elements of a Website Cory BosketCory is the Director of Content Development at Eyeflow. He graduated with a degree in Multimedia from Point Park University, where he held focus in print writing and online content. When not at work, Cory spends his time conquering Pittsburgh's hills on his bike, tackling DIY projects and crafting creative recipes. 2016 Digital Marketing Essentials Learn how to improve your search engine performance dramatically and do more business online! Check it out!