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Mobile web and SEO: things to consider

Smartphones have changed the way people use the internet and, with the uptake of smartphones now making waves in developing markets, the mobile browsing revolution shows little sign of abating.

A recent Google survey demonstrated that 9 out of 10 mobile searches result in an action (e.g. purchasing products or visiting businesses), so making sure your website is well optimised for mobile search can be critical to your fortunes online.

Mobile searches account for almost 25% of all searches on the internet, and marketing companies have been doubling their mobile budgets year on year. For the most part, optimisation is the same as it is for regular sites – content, keywords and links – but there are some nuances you should bear in mind when looking to tap this important market.

Mobile keywords

Because mobile phone searches are done primarily on small keyboards, the search terms tend to be 25% shorter than those carried out on a desktop. That means that keyword selection must be adapted if you want to compete. Google’s keyword tool allows you to filter mobile searches for you to adequately target keywords.

Mobile traffic

Before you begin optimising for mobile, it’s worth checking how much of your traffic actually comes from mobile devices. This will vary greatly on the type of business you are as well as where you’re located. Use Google Analytics to have a look at your mobile traffic – looking at how users interact with your site and whether this interaction converts into sales.

Mobile site design

A few years ago, if you wanted to fully engage with mobile users, you would have to design specific mobile sites. With the proliferation of smartphone technology, this is no longer required as smartphones are more than capable of viewing websites in full.

As screens get bigger and processing speeds get faster this trend looks set to continue, but consider whether yours would benefit from a different layout to make browsing easier. Sites with significant e-commerce aspects are particularly likely to benefit. For some websites, the best option may be to develop an application for users to interact with your site directly.

Mobile content

Mobile users interact with websites differently to regular PC users, which mean you should optimise mobile content for this purpose. You want to give users access to the information they need in a simple, direct fashion, and make it easy for them to purchase products.

Mobile content works similarly to regular content marketing strategies: understanding your users, identifying correct keywords and providing interesting and useful copy. Go about it in a planned, switched-on manner and you can open up your site to a significant section of browsers who are ready, willing and able to engage with your brand, use your site and buy your products.