By now it should be no surprise that mobile compatibility is important for your website and your business. Google has been discussing the importance of mobile websites for a couple years now. They even assigned a ranking factor to mobile friendly sites in 2015. We have affectionately named that algorithm update Mobilegeddon. There was also a “boost” to this update in May of this year, with the purpose of stressing the importance of the mobile website experience for your customers.
Wondering where your website stands with mobile compatibility, and how Google, and potentially your customers, view your website in terms of their mobile experience? Here are four areas you should pay attention to going into 2017.
Just like anything we do, mobile must be put into context with everything else we need to do to make our businesses successful. Is mobile even important to my customers? Using Google Analytics, we can get a good feel for this. If less than 20% of my visitors are mobile customers, it may not be as important for me to spend a lot of time and money to make sure the mobile version of my site is at peak performance just yet. That probably won’t be true forever so make sure you have a plan and budget to deal with mobile compatibility in the future.
Making sure the format of your site is compatible with most mobile devices is critical. Google has a couple tools to allow you to test if your site is compatible. The first is the mobile friendly test tool. This tool will allow you to test individual pages for mobile compatibility. The second tool is the Mobile Usability Report in Google Console. This report will tell you if Google is detecting any issues with buttons, images, copy, etc on your site. Both tools will help you understand if your site is compatible and what you need to fix.
Google has recently announced speed as a likely ranking factor in 2017. Google has said this about desktop websites for almost seven years now. Now it looks like they will apply the same or even more importance on speed for mobile sites. Measuring mobile website speed is easy with Google’s mobile page speed tool. Google has also come out in strong support of the AMP (Accelerated Mobile Pages) Initiative. Simply put AMP will make it easier and quicker to consume content on a website. At Cazbah we are working with WordPress plugin solutions to pick the best AMP implementations for our customers in 2017/2018.
Compatibility and speed are great, but if your content is not good, none of this matters. You MUST create content on your website that is useful and compelling to your customers and visitors. If you don’t, it doesn’t matter how great your mobile implementation is. Therefore, like with anything else, it is so important to measure performance. What is the bounce rate, exit rate, conversion rate and other engagement metrics for your mobile website? Google Analytics and your Internet Marketing Consultant will help understand these metrics and how they relate to your mobile visitors.
Mobile traffic is not going to decrease for anyone in 2017. It will just keep growing. Smart phones, tablets and other devices have become an important part of all our lives and as they get better they will become even more important. Work with your Internet Marketing Consultant to make sure you have a plan in 2017 to give your mobile website visitors the best experience possible.