Mobile SEO & responsive design
Apps are not mandatory by any means, but they’re nice to have. Actually, I’d be willing to bet that they’ll become a “must have” rather than a “nice to have” in the very near future. Having a mobile-friendly site, on the other hand, should be at the top of your priority list — now more than ever with the Google mobile-friendly algorithm poised to roll out this month.
With new mobile devices continuing to crop up in the marketplace, the number of screen sizes continues to grow as well. You now have to design for desktops, laptops, smartphones, tablets and so on. Are you planning a responsive redesign? Here are some quick ‘n dirty mobile SEO & responsive design tips to help you get started.
One way to ensure you deliver the right experience to the right user is by leveraging responsive design—methods which change the layout of a web page based on a user’s device.
Responsive Design “responds” to the type of browser, platform and screen resolution used on the device. Using flexible grids and images, the design can adjust its layout to fit the screen being used.
Why implement response design?
- Google mobile-friendly algorithm: it’s about to roll out (April 21st) — and you don’t want to risk lose valuable search rankings (especially if your competitors are ready to rock).
- Simpler search engine crawling: when a site copies each desktop URL over to a mobile URL, search engines need to find twice as many URLs. Responsive design makes search engine indexing more efficient.
- Authority: links to your site remain an important ranking factor to search engines. Responsive design lets you point all links to one site, rather than having two sites competing against each other.
Mobile URLs can get left behind
There are several reasons that desktop URLs out-perform their mobile counterparts. Some factors that can cause mobile URLs to have few backlinks include:
- Canonical issues—tell search engines which versions of content are the most authoritative.
- Cloaking—en sure engines see what users see.
- Redirects—can increase page load time and negatively influence the page’s SERP rankings.
Responsive design disadvantages
- Responsive design can be somewhat expensive in the beginning
- Switching an existing site to responsive design and ensuring it functions properly can be time-consuming in the beginning
- As the number of different screen sizes continues to grow in the marketplace, so too does the need to update the responsive design to accommodate the demand
Responsive design advantages
- Using responsive design allows you to leverage the backlink profile of your desktop site
- Google and Bing both recommend response design
- Using responsive design allows you to maintain just one website, which increases your team’s efficiency and productivity
Meta data tips
- Keep meta descriptions under 115 characters (including spaces)
- Keep Title tags under 60 characters (including spaces)
- No need to use the meta keywords tag
Do you have any additional tips to share about mobilizing your website? Let us know by sharing a comment below.
Need help getting ready for the April 21st mobile-friendly algorithm? Give me a buzz, I’m here to help!