Mobile-friendly websites show up higher in search engines
Search Engine Optimization (SEO) is perhaps the most effective way of maximizing a business’ competitiveness online. SEO can help with brand enhancement, attracting new customers, creating repeat customers, and driving sales. If you are committed to achieving your full potential, you need to maximize your website’s SEO tactics, and one of the key strategies for ensuring this is by making your website mobile-friendly.
A mobile-friendly website is one which has been optimized to be viewed on mobile devices such as smartphones and tablets. Non-mobile optimized websites are designed to be viewed on laptops or PCs. As such, mobile devices – courtesy of their small screen sizes – cannot render them properly. Mobile optimization makes a website display perfectly on mobile devices.
Having a mobile-friendly website can boost your SEO in the following ways:
1. Higher Mobile SERP (search engine results page) Rankings
In April 2015, Google announced a change in algorithm which sparked fears of a “mobile-geddon” whereby non-mobile friendly websites would be eliminated from mobile SERPs. Thankfully the mass downgrading of websites didn’t happen but even then, Google’s algorithm now ranks mobile-friendly websites higher in mobile SERPs. Given that more and more people now access the web on their mobile devices, this can have positive benefits for your business.
2. Faster Loading Time
A mobile-friendly website loads faster on mobile devices which enhances its SEO, since loading speed is one of the metrics Google uses to judge a website’s user experience (UX). Websites with a better UX tend to be ranked higher by Google and other search engines – better UX ultimately means higher rankings.
3. Lower Bounce Rates
One of the measures Google uses to judge a website’s relevance is the bounce rates – a website with a high bounce rate tends to be downgraded while those with a low bounce rate get upgraded. Websites that aren’t mobile-friendly usually experience a higher bounce rate especially among mobile visitors. This is because their sites don’t display very well on the viewer’s mobile device. A mobile-friendly website has a lower bounce rate which contributes positively towards its SEO.
4. Higher Click Through Rates (CTRs)
In November 2014, Google introduced a “mobile-friendly” label in mobile SERPs (this label identifies websites which are mobile-friendly). Having such a label can lead to higher CTRs since it guarantees that the website will render properly on the mobile device. A higher CTR means more visitors, which raises your website’s profile among search engines.
5. Higher Repeat Visitations
A mobile-friendly website with great content is more likely to generate repeat visitations from mobile users. Repeat visitations raise your website’s SEO, since search engines tend to rank popular websites higher.
6. More Social Sharing
Mobile-friendly websites are more likely to be shared, liked and mentioned by mobile users on their social media sites. This is enhances the website’s “social media signals” and helps your SEO because search engines now use social media signals to rank websites. Websites with more signals (i.e. many followers, more shares, greater comments from followers, etc.) are ranked higher than those with few signals. As such, having a mobile-friendly website can enhance your social media signals and thereby improve your SEO.
7. More Backlinks
Backlinks have always been essential for SEO. Nowadays, websites (especially authority websites) are selective about where they link to and most now consider mobile-friendliness as a criterion for linking because they don’t want to send their visitors to websites whose content they may not be able to view. If your website isn’t mobile-friendly most authority websites may not want to link to it, meaning building backlinks will be difficult for you. However, if your website is mobile-friendly, then getting high quality backlinks will be much easier.
So, Is Your Website Mobile-Friendly?
We touched on seven ways that having a mobile-friendly website enhances your SEO. The first step is to find out if your website is mobile-friendly. To make it simple, Google has a tool which you can use to find out called the Mobile-Friendly Test, where you can check how mobile-friendly your website is. You can find the tool here.
If your website isn’t mobile-friendly, you will eventually have to redesign it. Mobile-friendliness is implemented using what is referred to as a “responsive web design.”
If you are considering making this transition now, and would like a quote on getting started, click here.