Five Key Elements of Mobile SEO
Smartphones and tablets have revolutionized the way we experience online content. Website design has become simpler, and content has been rearranged to display the most meaningful information first. With mini computers floating in pockets everywhere, search engine optimization (SEO) for mobile sites is crucial to harnessing the potential of any business.
What to consider when optimizing for mobile
Some elements of mobile-friendly sites are more important than others. However, the most successful websites incorporate all of them. A customer’s online experience with a company is often the first one, so website optimization is no less important than more tangible investments. Below are some basic tips to get you started.
For mobile devices, less is more. It’s frustrating to navigate a confusing website on a desktop, but it’s not even tolerable on a 5-inch screen using only your fingers. Be clear about what you want your visitors to know about your business—don’t crowd the message with unnecessary information or too many buttons.
Effective design layouts incorporate optimized images, text and column formatting, and content prioritization. Exploring the site should feel intuitive—after all, it is literally hands on.
Mobile users are on-the-go. They won’t wait for more than a few seconds to swipe back to the search engine results page (SERP) and try a different site. Since smartphones and tablets have less room for processing hardware and are more prone to connectivity issues, website structure holds a much heavier weight in terms of loading speed.
Optimizing images for size is one of the first and easiest ways to increase page speed and improve your mobile SEO. You can also reduce or optimize special effects, but don’t use Adobe Flash as it isn’t universally supported on mobile. Take advantage of the browser cache. Remember that easy access to relevant information is more important than neat tricks—everyone is trying to accomplish something.
Meta descriptions and headings
This comes back to content prioritization. Mobile screens can’t display as much information at a time as desktop computers, so revising titles and descriptions to fit on smaller devices is key in driving mobile traffic from SERPs. When users enter your site, they should experience the same prioritization. Don’t make your visitors guess where they should click next. Trial and error is too tedious for the mobile environment, and consistency is key in SEO.
Research continues to support heavy local traffic in mobile searches and sites. Be sure your company is registered with Google My Business and place your contact information somewhere obvious on your site. This includes address, phone number, and whatever else is relevant to your visitors. How can users benefit from your business right now?
Include a link to the full desktop site
While the ultimate goal is to create an adequate mobile site for users, providing a link to the full desktop version ensures that viewers can access what they’re looking for, even if they have to take the long way. The link should be easy to find but not distracting. The bottom of the home page is a good place to start.
Finally, be sure to test your mobile site for optimization regularly. This tool by Think with Google can tell you how well your site is performing.
Want to learn more about SEO? Check out our other posts:
Maintaining Local SEO with Multiple Locations
Maintaining local SEO may be difficult for multi-location businesses. Small inconsistencies, website bugs, or lack of a location page can diminish your local SEO score. That being said, there are some tips while setting up a website with multiple locations that will prevent companies from taking a big hit in local SEO.
The first major key to maintaining local SEO with multiple businesses is properly setting up a Google My Business (GMB) page. Google My Business is a program run by Google that links other programs such as Google Search and Google Maps. GMB is essential to building local SEO for all businesses. When working with multiple business locations, multiple GMB profiles are necessary. And the key element (and where some businesses overlook) is consistency. Making sure that each profile is consistent with information on each GMB page is essential to building and maintaining local SEO. When setting up separate profiles, double check to make sure that every element that each location shares, is the same throughout. 
There are a couple of options when setting up websites for local SEO. The first option is to set up separate URLs within the main website for each individual location. According to Google’s head of web spam Matt Cutts, each location should get its own unique URL and each page and their respective URL should be included in your sitemap to help Google and other search engines index the content. The second option is creating separate websites for each location. Managing multiple websites may be costly and a pain, but it could make a big difference in the user experience (being local) and also bring in relevant traffic. By having multiple websites, you can tailor information and keywords to each certain location. Keep in mind that many Google searches include a city followed by a service, so having specific pages set up to locations may generate more hits. One thing to be cautious about while setting up multiple websites is carrying over too much information between sites. It’s alright to carry basic information over, but the point of having multiple websites is to be able to tailor the information to each location. Each website should be unique to its location for a more personable user experience.
Think of ways to share your involvement with your community.
Local SEO is a very important aspect of online marketing. Maintaining local SEO quickly becomes tricky while dealing with multiple locations. While trying to optimize local SEO, remember to take great caution while setting up Google My Business profiles. Make sure every similarity between locations is consistent. Setting up URLs or unique websites for each location is also very important. Keeping these tips in mind while working with multiple locations will assist in better local SEO.
Written by: Kody Gerard
Google Search Console & Link Building
It’s time for business owners to take the time to understand Google ranking. What is Google Webmaster? It’s another free tool many business owners know nothing about that can really help them gain visibility of what’s happening with their website.
Why should you care? Because there are many marketing companies out there taking advantage of business owners, charging them fees for giving them information that Google has already provided…some even will refuse to give business owners access to their own information…Even if a business owner decides he or she doesn’t have time to learn about search engine optimization, we feel they should at least know how to get access to the information.
Here the main sections of the information found about your website within Google Search Console and a couple of examples of the sub-categories within each:
- Search Appearance – structured data, HTML improvements
- Search Traffic – search traffic queries, links to your site
- Google Index – pages indexed, content keywords
- Crawl – crawl errors, crawl stats
- Security Issues – resources for hacked sites and cross-site malware
- Other Resources – page speed insights, email markup tester, custom search for your site, structured-data testing tool
How important is Link Building in your SEO strategy?
Link building is essential in an SEO strategy, but it’s about quality, not quantity. Paying someone to send out masses of articles that are keyword stuffed to irrelevant sites is the wrong way to go. Learn more about Link Schemes from Google Search Console Help.
If you want to dig into Google algorithm updates of Panda, Penguin, and Hummingbird, @Marie_Haynes of Moz does a heck of a job explaining it in her blog “Your Google Algorithm Cheat Sheet: Panda, Penguin, and Hummingbird”
And lastly, if you have not done an SEO audit on your site lately, OpGo provides that service as well. We are very transparent in our methods—we’re here to help business owners, not take advantage of their lack of digital knowledge.