Search engine optimization, otherwise known as the practice behind optimization content for search engines, is everywhere nowadays. Without utilizing SEO in some form, the people you need to make your website visible won’t be able to find your website. In fact, without their presence, your site simply won’t exist.
SEO, on the other hand, helps them find your site, especially if they’re naturally searching for something relevant to your site. The practice is pretty much the key to connecting people to the information they want through the websites that they’ll grow to care about on a regular basis.
The past two decades have seen plenty of people from all sorts of web development backgrounds use search engine optimization in some meaningful way. After all, SEO is all about search. Nowadays, SEO is used to target various types of search, including academic search, news search, image search, video search, local search and general keyword searches.
Funnily enough, people aren’t just using their desktop and laptop computers to search anymore….
What Is Mobile SEO?
Did you know there’s a new way to target users via search? Okay, it isn’t exactly new, but SEO has been trending toward such a change over the past five years.
Mobile search. Ever since smartphones became the standard, along with tablets, people have started searching on the go. Naturally, search engines adapted as soon as possible. But… websites still have a ways to go.
Mobile SEO now matters, after all. Mobile SEO is exactly what you think: optimization for websites accessed through mobile devices. Mobile SEO doesn’t just involve your standard on-page SEO, either. It combines elements like responsive site design, page speed and site structure to deliver a completely customized-for-mobile experience for end users who access websites via mobile device.
Mobile SEO: The Best Practices?
Page speed on mobile platforms matters. The longer it takes for a page to load via mobile device, the more likely a user may navigate to another web page. Besides optimizing your mobile images, tweaking other elements like site code, browser caching and other elements can help bolster page speed and produce a better user experience.
Site elements + Site design
Optimizing site elements also involves omitting those that just don’t work on all mobile devices. Flash is a common example of that. Flash, although pretty effective on PCs, isn’t universally compatible on mobile devices. Now, most mobile devices utilize HTML5 video.
Amid all of the optimization is a robust site design… you did keep that in mind, right? Mobile site design is ultimately responsive, adjusting its site elements to fit devices at any screen size and resolution. Combined with optimized site elements, a great mobile site design will likely produce the most powerful asset you can have nowadays: a well optimized mobile site.
Local search is more important than ever. Businesses who operate locally need mobile search in order to connect with their local prospective customers. Some of the best ways to utilize ‘local SEO’ involves standardizing your city and state within your website’s metadata, which can help essentially link your site to keywords associated with your local area.
Mobile SEO… and What to Look For
The rising use of mobile devices has helped push the importance of mobile SEO into the forefront. Nowadays, webmasters have to utilize mobile SEO in some way or they’ll likely be missing out on a significant portion of their potential audience.
Take this data from Pew Internet Research (2013-2014 Statistics):
34 percent of mobile web users go online most of the time by using their phones, without using another device like a laptop or desktop computer.
63 percent of adult smartphone users now use their phones to browse the web, as of May 2013.
Local search, as mentioned, is also heavily influenced by the mobile web:
At least 74 percent of adult smartphone users (18 and up) use their phone to find directions or other information pertaining to their current location.
At least 30 percent of adult smartphone users, specifically those who use social media, have allowed their social media profile to track their location when they post (via mobile).
12 percent of those users also use a ‘Geo-social service’ to share their location with friends or check-in while visiting specific locations, which was down from 2012’s 18 percent.
The Pew data indicates a trend: that the mobile web’s risen in prominence over the past four years. In addition, some users are taking precautions to prevent too much of their location data from being revealed, as evidenced by the last statistic.
Mobile SEO is also moving toward giving users a more well rounded experience, ensuring users won’t have a difficult time browsing websites via mobile devices. So… you’re probably wondering if there’s anything else you should know about mobile SEO or, rather, using such a practice. Well, here’s some of our best advice for utilizing mobile SEO:
Make it easy to share content via social sharing.
Make sure your mobile site provides a great user experience.
Make sure your site responds well to all sorts of mobile devices.
For mobile apps:
Link your app across several different mobile platforms (i.e. linking iOS and Android versions).
Make your app index-able for search engines.
Build deep links within your app to enhance ‘linkability’ across platforms and your associated websites.
Simple right? Well… while some of you might think it’s a bit much, trust us. Learning about mobile SEO is pretty essential nowadays. Many people who use search engine optimization on a regular basis regularly incorporate mobile SEO practices into their ‘main’ on-page SEO practices. This essentially unifies how their end users see their site, producing an experience that’s truly universal.
And really, making the web that much more accessible is pretty important nowadays.