To Google, Mobile is Everything

May 03, 08:30 PM
Google ranks websites based on what they do on a mobile phone. Desktop performance isn’t even a consideration anymore. And while you’ve been using a responsive design for years, is your website actually made for the mobile user?
 
This is Clickstarter, the Australian digital marketing podcast. I’m Dante St James.
 
It’s no longer good enough to simply have a mobile-friendly design. You need to make sure that your website is a superstar performer on mobiles. 
 
Since mobile use of most websites is now running at between 70 and 90% of all traffic, how do you make sure you’re hitting the mark on mobiles?
 
You need to:
 
-       Concentrate more on the information you’re sharing than on the design of the site
-       Cut down the clutter, and
-       Get to the point quickly
 
Let’s look at that a bit more closely.
 
1.     Concentrate on information rather than design
 
Your mobile website viewers are not there to marvel at your beautiful design, worship at the altar of your logo or be dazzled by the video of a drone fly-through of your warehouse. The intent of a mobile visitor to your site is driven by what they need to get from your site when they get to you. And in 6 out of 10 cases that is information on your products and services. The other 4 out of 10 cases are just about always going to be about getting your contact or location information.
 
So when you put barriers in front of that information, like big slideshows, hero images and autoplay videos, you’re turning the whole experience into an annoying mess.
 
To begin with, the following elements have no place on a mobile-first website:
 
-       Slideshows
-       Image galleries in grid layouts
-       Background videos
-       Long About Us descriptions on home pages
-       Big chunky social media icons
-       Embedded social media content and like boxes
 
Every one of these things stands in the way of getting your prospective customer to where they want to get to. And pushes them further away from a sale with you.
 
2.     Write for an easy reference, rather than an impressive wordcount
 
Another way that we tend to get in the way of our customer’s needs is by throwing lots of words in the way. If you’re writing blogs and content pages on your website to attract Google results, remember too, that Google is just reflecting what people do when they come to your articles and pages.
 
If it takes too long for someone to get the information they need from your page, they leave. So does Google. So get to the point really early in the article or page. Try presenting the info high up on the page in the form of one-line dot points, then later, expanding on those points in paragraphs.
 
This lets people skim to find what they need, which makes your website more useful to more people, more efficiently.
 
The important thing across all these ideas is getting the design and words out of the way of the most important thing of all on your website, easily consumed information about your products and services.
I’m Dante St James. You can learn more about digital marketing the Australian way at clickstarter.com.au, and give your business all the tools it needs to get known, get found and stay known.