So the big scary day has been and gone, leaving the world in the wake of Google’s ‘Mobilegeddon’. This was of course the day on which Google made the biggest change to its search algorithm in years by taking direct aim at websites that weren’t up to the mark by way of mobile-friendliness and basically ousted them from the results rankings of anyone searching via mobile. Comparatively few were stupid enough to ignore these warnings, but at the same time the fact that vast swathes of websites suddenly made themselves mobile-friendly increased competition for other businesses enormously.
Which leads to the important question – what can a web business do in the post-Mobilegeddon era to both stay in Google’s good books and ideally stand out from the crowd SEO-wise?
1 – Headline Focus
Well, first of all it’s a good idea to intensify the already heavy focus on extremely concise and high-impact headlines above most other page elements. One of the biggest challenges brought about by mobile is that of grabbing the attention of the reader in a matter of seconds and gripping them enough to encourage them to stick around and read on. One of the best ways of approaching this is to look at the headlines you create as if they were Twitter posts – if you were to see your headline on Twitter, would you (honestly) click it and keep reading?
2 – Address Key Points Early On
For a very good idea of what not to do to win over mobile audiences, take a look at any of those standard cliché sales pages where the point you’re looking for is about 500 lines of text further down and you have to scroll and mine extensively to find it. This isn’t the end of the world when you’re armed with a larger screen and a mouse, but when playing with a tiny touchscreen, there’s no way you’re going to bother hanging around long enough to find what you’re looking for. So when it comes to the mobile crowd you should be thinking in the exact opposite way – the main points immediately, sub-headlines after and the more in-depth stuff to follow.
3 – General Written Content Limitation
It can be quite off-putting for a mobile user to head over to any given site and be presented with an unholy amount of written text to go through. It’s worth remembering that so many mobile web users are opportunists who will capitalise on that five or ten minutes they have to spare randomly throughout the day. As such, you should be looking to both suck them in and ‘seal the deal’ as quickly and effectively as possible, which is rarely accomplished with block after block of unbroken text. By contrast, bullet points and punchy sentences make much better choices.
4 – Clear Calls to Action
Still on the subject of winning over those with limited time available, make it as easy as you possibly can for those wishing to convert or sign up to actually do so. If they’ve only got minutes to spare, the last thing you want to do is make it all too complicated for them to take the next steps. You don’t necessarily want to cross the line into desperation or distraction with CTA buttons all over the place, but do make it so that anytime they wish to go ahead, they can do so there and then.
5 – Mobile SEO
Don’t forget that mobile web users tend to use more specific search terms and queries than traditional desktop users may once have. Instead of just looking for Italian food for example, they’re more likely to look for cheap pizza on any given street in the town they happen to be in. As such, it’s a good idea to target your SEO around local and specific search queries, as opposed to those of a more generic nature.
6 – Simplicity
Last but not least, there’s very little in the world more annoying than a so-called mobile-friendly website that is nigh-on impossible to access or use due to its overuse of complex and data-hungry content. There’s a time and a place for giant HD images and video clips and the like – a mobile site generally is not it. If you’re looking to make the most of these ‘micro moments’, then you need to be aware of how fast your pages load and how easy they are to work with. If they prove to be even a slight pain in the proverbial, you’re fighting a losing battle.