Mobile devices have come a long way since the Nokia 3210. A calling, text messaging and playing Snake was enough to keep us happy back in the early 2000s when mobile was becoming a mainstream necessity. Slowly new features were added, color screens came first, then MP3 playback, better cameras followed and suddenly internet access was just a button away.
But what has made mobile take off is the extra screen real estate available to us through touch screen technology. Allowing us to do more than we could possibly imagine 10 years ago.
Mobile is at a stage now, where 55% of US adults own a smartphone. And with no sign of slowing down – 81% of U.S. cell phone users are expected to have smartphones in 2015.
For most, a mobile device is the first entry point for getting onto a website. Whether it’s a smartphone or a tablet, a mobile optimized website is always easier to navigate through than a full desktop version. Being able to connect wherever you are is a major convenience because waiting at the bus stop isn’t all that boring anymore.
Social Media On Mobile
Content is the fuel that feeds inbound marketing. A blog is your central hub where you want to drive people to. And social media sites like Twitter, Facebook and LinkedIn are where people spend time browsing.
As a true inbound marketer you’ll be promoting your content on social media. Your audience can be browsing through their feeds touch base with friends or finding something interesting to read.
When the latter happens, that’s when a mobile optimization plays it part. There’s no need to zoom into the content, there’s no clutter from advertisements and sidebars. The content is at the center, neatly presented and with no distractions.
You want to get your content read, otherwise it’s useless! The first step is designing it to be extremely easy to read even for mobile users. To find out how many people are coming to your website, check out your Google Analytics and go to your Dashboard. You’ll find the devices people are using to visit your site by following this path Dashboard > Audience > Technology > Browser & OS
Back in January 2012, Nielsen reported that 85% of tablet/smartphone owners use their device while watching TV.
Unlike desktops and laptops over 13 inches – smartphones and tablets give you more mobility due to their lightness. Meaning people have no problem taking their browsing to the couch and the bedroom.
Anyone who visits your website is a potential customer, and one thing preventing purchases from happening is the ability to easily pay for products on a mobile device. There’s nothing worse than having to open up your computer and make a purchase, just because your smartphone/tablet isn’t optimized.
Mobile Search Engine Optimization
With mobile users on the rise, Google is also setting out to improve its mobile search results. Remember Google wants users to have a pleasant experience on the sites that show up in their search results.
To make sure you stay ahead of the rest with mobile SEO, Google has the following suggestions for website owners:
- Use responsive design
- If responsive design is not possible, consider separate URLs for desktop and mobile
- Avoid faulty redirects
- Take care of 404 errors appearing on smartphones
- Use HTML5 tags for video and avoid formats not supported on all devices, such as Flash.
For more details about mobile SEO, check out this post from Google: Google Changes in rankings of smartphone search results
If you are using WordPress, an easy way to make your website mobile is with a plugin like WPtouch. WordPress also has another plugin called Jetpack which – among other things – lets you make your website mobile friendly.
Image by keith.bellvay