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Best Practices for Effective Mobile SEO
March 6, 2014 By 7th Media | 0 Comments
Search engine optimization (SEO) might seem very intimidating.Despite the odd jargons and complex theories, the rules for effective desktop and mobile SEO campaigns are rather simple.
With nearly a third of all searches coming from mobile devices, it’s no wonder mobile search has really come of age. And there’s not a few online businesses who’re giving a lot of serious attention to their mobile presence compared to desktop versions.
And through the years of serving clients with our mobile development and SEO services, we are always in the view that mobile search is a crucial area any serious brand must endeavor.
This best practices list is aimed at helping business owners or their search marketing consultants take advantage of the importance of building mobile websites or responsive website with SEO in mind.
The Mobile Web Experience
Before we delve deeper into mobile SEO and the best practices surrounding search marketing’s emerging rock star, I will first discuss the unique elements that differentiate mobile websites from their desktop counterparts.
• Different Requirements. Mobile is certainly a different league on its own. With a very tiny, compressed keypad, mobile web requires that users use fingers when entering data.
Not the least, using smartphones or tablet devices often leaves users in uncomfortable situations, such as being squeezed in a crowded subway train or bus, and more of the likes.
These and other factors explain why mobile SEO, usability and mobile friendly websites are crucial to render the best browsing or search experience to your online audience.
• Search is Different. Searching through mobile gives users an entirely different experience than how they’re used to in their desktop personal computers.
Keywords should be paid with big attention. But factors like location, device type and content formats that command greater importance in the ladder of priorities.
Mobile is limited in terms of what it offers search engines (e.g., limited data). Here’s why there’s a need for ‘predictive search’, which rely on second-guessing user intent.
• Different User Behavior. Users search differently on mobile devices. Proximity in mobile search is important as the brands closest the searchers’ location usually appear always nearly the first. Thus, mobile search results are based on the location data of the searcher.
• Mobile Web Design is Different. It’s a must for mobile web designers to follow accessibility standards for mobile. Responsive web makes up for the varying screen sizes of the device, and what search spiders can easily understand.
Mobile Friendly or Mobile Optimized?
There’s no question about putting your mobile users at the center of your technical mobile SEO strategy. But when it comes to planning, there are a few considerations to follow.
Among the first critical idea to mull over carefully is deciding the type of mobile site based on your business needs and customer preferences. There are three cited types of mobile sites that Google support, and these are:
Responsive Web Design
This allows for desktop-designed websites to render well in any smartphone and tablet devices. This design uses the same content you used for your personal computer and mobile gizmos. Content get reconfigured using CSS or cascading style sheets (CSS).
Dedicated Mobile Site
A mobile optimized website uses a different URL or mobile URL, such as .mobi or m.site.com. This works by detecting the device users employ in viewing your webpage, which will then redirect them to your mobile-optimized webpage.
Adaptive Web Design
Also known as dynamic serving for detecting which device your user uses and then serving a mobile optimized webpage. The difference is that it uses the same URL.
While you’re free to adopt any of these mobile strategy approaches, it’s still best to consider what Google knows best: responsive web design for smartphone sites over a mobile site with a different mobile URL. However, your decision should not be limited entirely by that idea alone.
Note that responsive websites are not feature phone-friendly, which remains largely in use in developing and some developed countries.
Also, don’t forget mobile application development. Keep in mind what users prefer. Whether they prefer to use your mobile app or visit your webpages, always give them your best shot.
Mobile apps are typically useful when users need to use a tool multiple times, such as a resource or a business tool. Here, you’ll need to decide whether a mobile application will better serve your customers looking for a banking app than merely visiting your bank’s mobile website to learn about getting a mortgage loan.
A Couple More Mobile SEO Best Practices
Considering the unique elements of mobile, designing mobile websites with SEO in mind is tough yet challenging. However, to help ensure effective SEO for mobile, you will need to ensure that you follow the best practices for mobile SEO.
Here’s few list to get started:
- Ensure utmost optimization of your mobile site for search crawlers. Doing so means this has to start from the information architecture, design, coding and up to mobile SEO test. Have you used the correct headers? Are there no unnecessary IP blocking? Make sure everything’s addressed.
- Like SEO best practices for desktops, you will need to make sure your mobile site map’s been submitted to search engine to be discovered.
- Get a nice boost in traffic by submitting your mobile site to DMOZ.com and other directory projects.
- To position your site as a unique mobile resource, get yourself linked to relevant complementary webpages, especially by mobile optimized webpages.
- Earn back links from important and related mobile and desktop webpages.
- Your ensuring a clean code and relevant content can easily get you a stamp of approval from search engines. Place keywords into navigation, header tags, link text and make sure to bold or italicize keyword phrases.
- Since W3C Mobile Standards are the benchmark for quality and mobile friendly sites, make sure to to get your mobile site indexed and rated as compliant.
Bonus Mobile SEO Best Practice Tips
Remember the different unique elements of mobile compared with desktop personal computers so you’ll know what to do with your mobile SEO strategy.
Understanding your user needs and business can help advance your prospect of developing a unique mobile strategy with SEO in mind. Users are into mobile devices because they want to be amused, entertained and waste time.
Hence, by following the best practices for mobile SEO with the very aspects why your users are using mobile, you can keep the engagement value of your mobile site above par among your users’ unique expectations, as well as achieve mobile SEO advantages.
Best Practices for Effective Mobile SEO by 7th Media