Your website was hopping with timely blogs, useful articles, and handy assessments—all drawing robust engagement. When Google adopted a new search algorithm in April, though, the party ended. What happened?
Google took stock of the new normal: more frequently, people are vising websites on their phones or tablets. In fact, more than 60 percent of Web traffic now comes from mobile devices, according to comScore. To make it easier for people to view content in their preferred medium, Google is rewarding websites that translate seamlessly across platforms. If your website isn’t mobile-friendly, your search-result ranking may have dropped.
What does Google want to see?
When Googlebot checks your site, it takes note of factors that indicate the site will perform well on phone or tablet. For instance:
- Is the mobile viewport set? This will give you control over your page’s width and scaling for different devices, making sure your text doesn’t appear teeny tiny or run over the side of the page.
- Are the links too close together? Space around links ensures fingertips find the correct one.
- Is the text large enough to read? Mobile viewers will swipe away from pages filled with words that are too small to see.
If your site doesn’t pass mobile muster, you can optimize it in one of several ways.
- Responsive design involves creating one website that adapts as viewers move between platforms.
- Dynamic servicing uses several HTML scripts to make a single URL appear differently depending on the device employed.
- Finally, you can create another website optimized for mobile. When a mobile user clicks to your website or keys in a URL, your website will redirect them to the mobile version.
Keep in mind that people do different things on different platforms. A smartphone user may not want to read long, in-depth articles or view detailed infographics, while he or she may be eager to access actionable information via minimal clicks.
As you make your content mobile, think about what people do on their phones and tablets—perhaps they’d like to schedule appointments, text questions, or take a photo and compare it with an image library. Cross-platform optimization may be your chance to make your content more robust, user-centric, and immediately actionable.