The use of mobiles and tablets to search and buy online is increasing at a rapid rate. Take PIF for example – our technical platform for the Industry. We currently attract over 50,000 engineers and other industry professionals per month to the site; 35% of these visitors come to the site using a smartphone or a tablet. That is a lot of traffic! So it is very important for us that we build a responsive website that is optimised well for mobiles.
Businesses that wish to rank higher on tablet and mobile must make necessary changes to their websites. Scott Darrohn, COO at fishbat, a leading online marketing firm, urges businesses to make more of an effort building smart mobile websites to rank on Google.
“The mobile index is quite smaller than the desktop index,” he says. “There is more of an opportunity to rank higher on mobile browsers. As more people start to use mobile devices to search, it’s essential for brands to make sure their mobile sites possess relevant content and easily accessible navigation bars.”
So how exactly do you optimise you website for mobiles & Tablets?
1. Build a responsive website
First of all, make sure your website is responsive. What does ‘responsive’ mean?
“Responsive web design (RWD) is an approach to web design aimed at crafting sites to provide an optimal viewing experience—easy reading and navigation with a minimum of resizing, panning, and scrolling—across a wide range of devices (from desktop computer monitors to mobile phones).”
So basically, make sure your website is built in a way so it can be easily viewed and navigated on different sizes devices.
2. Simple, clean and un-complicated
Have a clean, simple layout and content that speaks to the customer with easy-to-read, straightforward content. An over-complicated website with thousands of deep pages will be difficult to use on a mobile or tablet. You can build a simpler version of your site, specific for mobile and tablet users.
3. Optimise mobile site load time
Users will automatically bounce from your mobile site if it does not load within a couple of seconds. Rapid load time is important in retaining customers. To increase site load time, make sure your website is a good hosting company, make sure clunky images are reduced in size and make sure videos are embedded, rather than uploaded. Finally, make sure your website code is ‘clean’. Heavy, complicated website coding will most definitely slow down site loading time.
4. Include unique features on your mobile site
This could mean anything from a barcode scanner to a click-to-call option. By making your call to actions unique to a mobile viewer, you are likely to increase your conversions significantly.
5. Do not hide content
Do not limit access to just mobile devices or hide content by creating a download application. Google and other search engines cannot access important content in apps. Make sure all your relevant content is posted within your mobile site.
6. Register on Google Places
Register the mobile site on Google’s My Business service. Most mobile users are more concerned with information on local brands and businesses, register your business with Google so that it pops up on mobile browsers when users search for your services or keywords. Out of the 30 billion mobile searches each year, about 12 billion are for local businesses.