Today Google has launched its latest changes to the SEO algorithm, which decides where your website will appear in search rankings. The latest update is a response to the increasing popularity of web browsing from mobile devices such as smart phones and tablets, and for e-commerce hosting sites this traffic can have a huge impact on sales.
In an effort to encourage sites to be more mobile friendly, the algorithm will now penalise sites that are not mobile responsive, pushing them further back in the search results. Ensuring your site is properly optimised for all devices is crucial to keep high traffic levels and generate leads. There are three key ways of doing this:
A separate mobile site
Having a separate site for mobile visitors means that you are able to tailor the site to provide the best visitor experience for those with smaller screens, with a neat layout, clear text and easy accessibility and navigation. The user is automatically redirected to a mobile URL, so more complex designs for PCs are still able to be used. It’s definitely the option Google likes, so for those determined to be at the top of the rankings it’s a clear winner. However, it is the most expensive option, so is mostly used by major companies and organisations that get the majority of their traffic from mobile sources.
This method allows the webserver to ‘sniff’ the visitor’s user-agent and establish how to respond based on that information, redirecting the user at a server level. It means that only one URL is needed, but the user is still able to have a fully responsive site if they are accessing it using a mobile device. It is cheaper than having a separate site, but can be difficult to implement and maintain.
Easily the most popular option for the vast majority of businesses, a responsive design means that content is adapted so that the size and layout of the page can be viewed easily by all users, no matter the size of the device. This is the cheapest option and has a lot of benefits for user experience, especially quick load times and easy navigation.
Whatever route to mobile SEO you choose, it is important that you maintain a reliable and safe site. Dedicated servers are a good way to add to website security and provide your web visitors with an exceptional experience.