Forget checking email or even calling, smartphones are fast becoming the instrument of choice for on-the-go Internet searching. In fact, priority number one with smartphones is now searching, says Statista. Companies need to know how to rise to the top of search queries regardless of what device is used. To gain a competitive advantage and help achieve better search engine results on mobile devices, keep in mind these seven tips as part of your mobile strategy:
Mobile search queries should be shorter because users are in a hurry and typing long terms is unwieldy. Using images or voice search is also possible. Companies would be wise to adapt their SEO strategy to the special demands of the mobile market. Are you aware of or understand the voice search and keywords that mobile users like to use? Is the content designed for it? Are your images meaningful enough?
Mobile phones are being used increasingly to search for local products and services, more so than on a desktop computer. Indeed, according to Mobile Marketing Watch, some 40 percent of mobile searches are for local companies or services — a further impetus for companies to make sure their websites and social media profiles offer complete information as well as directions. Check keywords and make sure directions are correct in geolocation services such as Bing or Google Maps.
Companies should rely on content that is original, unique, entertaining and relevant to the interests and demands of their target groups. But when it comes to content for smartphones and other mobile devices, the focus must be more on quality than quantity. In other words, try to limit the volume of text for small screens.
Pay attention to what mobile users have to say. Since they enjoy sharing information and experiences, giving and getting tips and opinions, companies should not be afraid to join the social fray with content that’s easy to share on mobile devices. And of course, keep track of what people are saying.
A company’s online presence must be fast and flawless at all times and on any device; but on mobile devices it’s vital that websites are crafted using responsive design, so that users should see their chosen website pop up in the format that fits their smartphone’s screen. Google recommends responsive design, in which all display sizes are combined under one URL, for mobile websites.
A page that loads slowly or requires formats that mobile devices are unable to display will drive visitors crazy — or to your competitor. Lightning-fast loading times – a second or less – are best. Another plus for responsive design—visitors save time and unnecessary clicks because they can get right to the content and don’t have to load the homepage.
You may have sacrificed meaning, but metadata continues to help better position a page in the SERPS (search engine results pages). Also, speaking URLs are important because search engines take into account how relevant a search term is for a page when sorting the search results. Pages linked with speaking URLs get listed considerably better than pages with cryptic URLs that nobody can say or remember.
The end result for companies that apply these seven tips is a happy mobile website visitor who can find your website, search it quickly, buy something, tell their friends, and come back again and again.
By Oliver Jaeger – Vice President Global Marketing & Communications, e-Spirit Inc. in North America. Oliver can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org.