10 Tips: A Quick Guide to Mobile-Friendliness
Google announced beginning April 21st, 2015, “Mobile Friendliness” will be a significant ranking signal. The official announcement was made via Google Webmaster Blog, and the search engine giant made it very clear of their intentions to favor websites with better mobile user experience.
This change will affect mobile searches in all languages worldwide and will have a significant impact in our search results…users will find it easier to get relevant, high quality search results that are optimized for their devices.
This algorithm update has captured the attention of many webmasters who are now feverishly adopting mobile compatibility. For some, this raised many questions as to what their next steps are, how this major algorithm update could affect their rankings, and what needs to be done.
Tip #1: Don’t Forget The Date!
You’ve put a lot of effort into making beautiful, responsive, user-friendly pages, right!? Well, don’t forget the date!
Tip #2: Be Responsive!
Responsive Web Design, a.k.a. RWD, allows the server to send the same HTML code to all devices to alter the rendering of the page on the device. Also, using a simple meta tag signals browsers that your page will adapt to all devices. This meta viewport tag gives the browser instructions on how to adjust the dimensions and scaling of the page to the device.
Tip #3: Faulty redirects
Remember, if you have separate mobile URLs you must redirect mobile users on each desktop URL to the appropriate mobile URL
Tip #4: Pass the test!
Google has implemented a really great mobile friendly test tool. Use it! This test tool will provide you with a very simple “yes” or “no” answer for each page. If you pass the test, great. If not, ya’ got some work to do!
Tip #5: No pinching!
Be sure to have readable text and on-page content to better user experience. Your text must be readable without zooming. Yes, pinch-to-zoom WAS cool in 2007 when the first iPhone was introduced. But now, not so much. No one wants to zoom in to see the top 10 celebs without makeup.
Tip #6: ABC’s – Always Be Crawlable
Tip #7: Size does matter
It’s not what she said. Size does matter. Be sure to size content to the screen so users won’t have to scroll horizontally or zoom. Also, make sure buttons and other clickable objects are sized correctly for touch.
Tip #8: Don’t use Flash!
Avoid using software that is not common on mobile devices, like Flash. Google recommends using HTML5 standard tags to include videos or animations.
Tip #9: Mind Your App
Promoting your native application to your mobile visitors is great. However, if not executed properly these can cause indexing issues. Be sure to keep your banner ad simple & minimal.
Tip #10: Know Your Configurations
“Mobile” refers to smartphones, but do not lose sight of the other configurations that exist.