The Complete Guide to Mobile SEO for Small Businesses

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We have a lot of clients ask us about the difference between mobile SEO and desktop SEO so we put together this guide to mobile SEO to help them.

If you’ve been around the digital marketing world recently, you must have heard the term “Mobile SEO.”

It comes up everywhere you go due to its importance and the difference it makes.

So, that makes you wonder—

What is mobile SEO? Why is it so popular? How does it differ from regular Search Engine Optimization? And what can I do to make sure my website is optimized for mobile SEO?

In this post, we’ll provide detailed answers to all these questions and more. 

Ready? 

Let’s get to it. 

What is Mobile SEO?

Mobile SEO focuses on optimizing websites for mobile users and devices. It aims to ensure that a website is serving mobile users with the best user experience.

Mobile SEO started to become a thing in 2015 when Google first announced that mobile searches surpassed desktop. 

And ever since, new updates have been rolling out to improve mobile search. 

Why is Mobile SEO so Popular?

According to StatCounter, 52.02% of organic traffic comes from mobile devices, with only 45% for desktop. The gap between the two continues to grow with more people preferring to use mobile to search online.

Mobile users are also more likely to complete a purchase or take a desired action on your landing pages.

In the past year, Google has been updating its’ search results to make them mobile-first indexed. That means that spiders will first crawl web pages in mobile view — then use those results to rank pages in the SERPs.

That alone should show the impact mobile has had on digital marketing and how things are changing.

How Is Mobile SEO Different From Regular SEO?

The same rules of regular SEO still apply for mobile SEO. 

You still have to produce quality content to rank better and drive more traffic to your website. And you must focus on serving an excellent user-experience to boost sales and conversions.

The difference, however, is in the audience you’ll be focusing on.

While desktop SEO targets all types of audiences, locations, and devices — mobile SEO does the opposite. 

In this Guide to Mobile SEO you’ll learn all about reaching the right user, at the right time, in the right location. 

Your focus will be directed towards mobile device visitors. Those users are generally looking to find answers to their queries quickly. And they’re often local searchers with high buyer intent.

How to Implement a Mobile SEO Strategy That Works

Any mobile SEO strategy will fail if it doesn’t start from the bottom up — and by that, we mean regular SEO.

To attract more local customers, you should first optimize your website for SEO.

Once you’re there, you can move to the more advanced mobile SEO practices. This is a real guide to mobile SEO:

1- Use Mobile-Friendly Design

There are many options to choose from when creating a mobile-friendly website. But, you should first be aware of the differences and consequences.

A – Separate URLs

When using two separate URLs for the same page, you’ll be directing users to different links depending on the device.

For example:

  • m.website.com
  • www.mywebsite.com

This method works for your visitors in the short term. But, it does more harm than good for your rankings in the long term. 

Separate URLs make it harder for crawling spiders to know which of your pages are the same. It also causes lots of redirects to the visitor and adds lots of work, which makes it hard to maintain.

B- Dynamic serving

Another option is to set up a system where the server responds with different HTML and CSS codes depending on the device type. 

That’s called dynamic serving.

With dynamic serving, the webpage URL remains the same. But, the content on the page is served differently based on the user agent.

Thas might be a good option if you can’t afford a website redesign. 

However, a common problem you’ll face is continuously is updating the list of user agents whenever a new mobile device enters the market.

C- Responsive design

Responsive design is the best option if you want an easy, effective way to target any device.

Responsive design uses the same URL and HTML, CSS codes to serve users. And it won’t sacrifice any loading speed, UX, or authority. 

And the best part?

It’s a one time process where you don’t have to add or update anything for your website to work.

2- Don’t Sacrifice Value for Fast Loading

Marketers used to hide valuable content from mobile users for the sake of fast loading speed. 

It was a reasonable step to take to improve site speed, but a very ineffective one when it came to SEO. 

Google spiders recently switched to mobile-first indexing. So, hiding content from mobile devices is a counterintuitive approach if you want better rankings.

You’ll hide valuable content that might help you rank better.

Also, loading speed will no longer be a problem with responsive design. There are many tools and advanced CMS in the market today to help you make your website responsive. 

You can make any content work for all visitors simultaneously.

3- Improve Mobile User Experience

The feeling your visitors get when browsing your website makes all the difference. So, improving user experience should be the ultimate focus of your mobile SEO strategy.

Here are some tips to improve user experience for mobile users:

  • Make your content easy to read and consume on any device.
  • Use plenty of white space in your design and keep it simple.
  • Establish a clear hierarchy between elements on your page.
  • Avoid cramming too much information on a single page.
  • Create clear navigation menus and breadcrumbs.

4- Monitor Your Website SEO Performance

Tracking website performance is a must for any business that’s looking to grow. 

It’s all about identifying problems and finding new solutions to adapt. And you can do that using Google Analytics and Search Console.

These tools can help you monitor your SEO performance for both desktop and mobile. You’ll know which pages are performing best and what type of device brings you the most traffic.

Once you learn that, you can shift your focus towards what’s already working and improve your content strategy.

Now What

Mobile SEO has gained tremendous popularity among SEO experts in recent years. 

And it’s only going to get more popular.

If your website is still not fully optimized for mobile, it’s time to apply what you learned here and grow your business.

We hope this guide to mobile SEO was helpful.

But if you need help building a mobile marketing strategy that works. We’re here when you need us.

Check out our Mobile Marketing Services or contact us today to learn more about how your expertise will help you take your business to the next level.

    Jeramy Gordon is the founder and Chief Content Officer at the Lorem Ipsum Company. He has been creating successful content strategies for almost two decades and believes in the power of high-quality content. He lives in Orange County, California, with his wife and two children.

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