The search algorithm is shifting toward mobile, but businesses still have a chance to catch up and cash in if they move fast. As seen on EContentMag.com
It’s not the end of the world, but it may mean the end of your SEO as you know it. Google’s new algorithm change and accompanying guidelines are a well-designed attempt to move the mobile revolution forward – rewarding mobile-friendly sites with favorable search results and diminishing the search results of “old school” non-responsive websites. While the ‘Mobilegeddon’ reference is a bit overblown, getting pushed down Google’s search ranking is certainly a legitimate concern for any brands looking to establish or increase their online performance. The fact is, Google ranking directly impacts businesses’ ability to attract customers and make money – that’s real. According to a 2014 Advanced Web Ranking study, more than 71 percent of searched lead to an organic click for sites on Google’s first page of search results. That was only true for 5.59 percent of searches on the second and third results pages. Additionally, and even more compelling, the first five results on a search page account for more than 67 percent of all clicks. That’s even more real.
Here’s the good news. Even sites behind on mobile-optimization will have an opportunity to take action and make the necessary upgrades without any permanent damage. There are five things Vokal recommends that you do right now to navigate the changes and improve your site’s performance:
1. Seek expert advice for an SEO audit: You don’t have to do it alone. There are extremely qualified and talented search and mobile experts available to help you assess where you currently stand and what steps are needed to get you to where you want and need to be. Yes, Google has offered standards and recommendations on their site, but some things are just not meant to be DIY. This requires a mobile strategist and SEO guru to get the job done right.
2. Use this opportunity to do some ‘Spring Cleaning’: You don’t need to rethink your entire mobile strategy or overcomplicate your upgrades, but use this time of ‘change’ to do a little cleaning out and sprucing up of your site. Simple responsive design and adaptive web design changes are a good way to start. Take a look at each aspect of your site to determine if it needs some TLC, because each improvement and upgrade can not only boost your Google ranking, but can also positively impact the overall user experience – something you should always be looking to optimize.
3. Optimize your content for mobile: You’re taking the necessary steps to create a more mobile-friendly site, partnering with an expert and making things happen. That’s great, but don’t forget about content within your site that may be holding you back. Something as simple as the blog post headline can make you unfavorable in the eyes of the Google Gods and pull you down in the ranks. Consider the importance of optimizing both the design and content within your site.
4. This is a journey, not a destination: There’s something to the cliché that resonates with all mobile designers and developers. Creating a robust mobile-friendly site requires constant attention and care. For many organizations, Google’s SEO changes are exactly the ‘event’ they needed to realize that an effective mobile strategy is not a one-time project. Organizations must be relentless when it comes to validating their platform effectiveness and functionality. Product development doesn’t end with deployment or submission to the App store. It’s an iterative process that includes maintenance, analytics gathering, and constant feature enhancements – great products aren’t built in one step, you have to keep working on it.
5. Enjoy the benefits and immediate ROI: By taking the necessary steps to optimize your site for mobile use, your organization will be well-positioned for success in the mobile age. The data is clear and mobile usage is only going up. Those who fully embrace the possibilities of what a solid mobility strategy offers will see immediate business impact.
Just like any challenge ahead, understanding how to tackle it head on is the most important step. Leveraging the expertise of a trusted digital partner, like the team at Vokal, and using the Google SEO changes as opportunity to make necessary enhancements to your site and mobile strategy, will only move your business forward – or should we say ‘up’ in the ranks.