By Jonathan Spindel and Corissa Craddick
“Mobilegeddon.” In February 2015, Google announced responsive design would become a major factor in website rankings, causing a frenzy as brands scrambled to adapt to new mobile guidelines. Now that more than 50 percent of all online traffic comes from mobile devices, these updates promise more benefits than ever.
Now, to further underscore mobile’s importance, Google announced additional algorithm updates with further elaborated responsive guidelines. This may not cause another Mobilegeddon, but it’s clear mobile responsive design is the new standard for brands’ online presence, and guidelines will continue to evolve. So how can businesses keep their site up-to-date? And how can you create a mobile-first strategy that makes these changes work in your favor?
The Open Secret: The Internet Is Now Mobile
More than 50 percent of users now access the internet from mobile devices. The value and voice of a brand must clearly resonate across all channel types if it wants to remain relevant. But beyond adapting to the size of the screen, brands need to adapt to mobile users’ behavior and lifestyle. Mobile users search for products and services while waiting in line at the grocery store, while running errands, at work, or in their downtime. Responsive design allows businesses to reach mobile users at the point of decision. For example, a car dealership can reach potential customers whose vehicles may need oil changes and provide them with coupons, promotions, and other incentives to capture a conversion. Brands need to anticipate a range of user behaviors and tailor their presence to engage with them at the most crucial moments.
Users Are Going Beyond Mobile, And So Should We
If brands want to send their message to consumers, they’ll need to reach them not just on mobile, but on all devices. The internet is on TVs, tablets, in cars, refrigerators, and more. “The Internet of Things,” which refers to the developing trend of internet access moving into everything from fitness trackers to your keychain to virtual reality, will continue to grow. Businesses that pay attention to hardware innovation and its effect on user behavior have an opportunity to get ahead in customer access and service, whereas those who haven’t adapted to these updates will lag behind.
Responsive design is essential for user retention and directly impacts conversions, users’ time on site, and overall engagement. Aligning online practices with user behavior allows brands to deliver engaging content to their audiences and helps strategically deploy initiatives that are essential to their business.
What Can You Do Right Now?
Implement every technical adaptation you possibly can, and make sure you’re paying attention to arising mobile behavioral trends so you’re not missing opportunities to engage your audiences. Ask your SEO specialist about canonical location data, store location pages, consumer portal management, reviews, and self-localization. And don’t forget to consider yourself as a mobile user. Ask yourself, how am I interacting with brands via the internet? What works and what doesn’t work? What do I wish I could do instead? To provide solutions to these questions, look for a partner to help move your brand into the future. Contact us at firstname.lastname@example.org for an SEO consultation today.