Why Mobile SEO Will Be Your Top Priority in 2017

If mobile SEO optimization isn’t already your top priority in 2017, it should be.

With the majority of global web traffic now handled by mobile devices, and search engines being the default gatekeepers of online content, getting SEO right has never been so critical. Yet sites are still designed on desktop computers, often with little regard for their appearance on other platforms or their appeal to mobile audiences.
Here, we consider ten steps that’ll help any website achieve mobile SEO optimization, as well as outlining why these factors have become so important nowadays…

  1.     Study traffic origins and behavior. Understanding your audience has never been so vital for mobile SEO optimization, so use a package like BrightEdge or SEMRush to investigate traffic’s origins and discern what users are looking for. Analyze the results before modifying your site accordingly.
  2.     Streamline for faster downloads. Today’s search engine algorithms estimate how long pages will take to download, prioritizing sites suitable for sluggish 4G or Wi-Fi networks. Use Google PageSpeed Insights to identify ways of reducing loading times, such as minimizing plugins or deleting superfluous code.
  3.     Avoid pop-ups. Also known as interstitials, pop-ups can be impossible to close on a smartphone. Accidentally clicking on a screen-hogging overlay and being directed off-site will deter most first-time visitors from returning. That’s fatal when traffic volumes play such a key role in determining site rankings.
  4.     Eliminate Flash. It’s incompatible with many mobile platforms, so using Flash on a mobile site is an extremely bad idea, regardless of how good it looks on desktop. Removing Flash should be a priority, before existing site rankings are downgraded further.
  5.     Use the robots.txt file. Google recommends using the robots file to permit crawling of image files whose captions and titles can contribute to SEO, as well as identifying CSS. The robots file is central to allowing algorithms to identify and prioritize sites with mobile-friendly coding.
  6.     Adopt responsive design. From TVs and tablets to consoles and computers, there is unprecedented diversity in modern screen resolutions. Use CSS to deliver the same content to every platform, with fluid grids displaying this content optimally, turning header menus into hamburger menus, etc.
  7.     Minimize written content. Mobile audiences are less likely to read lengthy copy, so prioritize the main points. Even a brief visit should impart key messages. Give subpages intriguing or catchy titles, focus on a few core points with each page, and don’t forget the SEO…
  8.     Optimize search terms. Google and Bing prioritize exact keyword matches, so use as many long tail keywords and popular search terms as your pared-down text boxes permit. Mobile SEO optimization is crucial to position your brand ahead of competitors.
  9.     Exploit hardware functionalities. Smartphones have GPS, so retailers can program their Store Finder pages to automatically display the closest outlets. Exploiting existing mobile technology will streamline aspects of the site, saving people time and boosting usability metrics.
  10.  Keep going! A new website represents the start of a journey, not the destination. Regular site updates and additions will enhance SEO, as well as giving audiences a reason to keep coming back. Additional traffic elevates the site’s profile, creating a virtuous circle that will drive your site ever higher in ranking results.

To get a SEO head start check out our Midphase SEO Guru himself!