Mobile Optimization for a Mobile-First Era

It was announced at the end of 2018  by Google that mobile-first was being utilized for over half its web pages for search results. Mobile-first, or mobile indexing is accessing the mobile version of a website to index its pages. On March 28th 2019, Google announced that mobile-first indexing will become the default for all new web domains beginning July 1, 2019.

 

This means upon registration, a new website will be crawled by Google’s smartphone Googlebots and the mobile-friendly content will be used to index the pages, read the site’s structured data and to show snippets from the site in Google’s search results, when relevant.

 

Now, more than ever, it’s crucial to ensure your SEO cycle includes a level and accurate techniques dedicated in achieving an effective mobile image of your online presence.

 

No matter you’re given industry, a high-quality mobile implementation of your website is a now mandatory step in the mobile-first era.

 

Today, companies should focus on several aspects of mobile development best practices inclusive of technical SEO and principles of website mobile design to create a logical customer-inviting online website presence that can endure the shift into Google’s mobile-first era.

 

Listed here are some best practices you can use to accomplish a high-quality mobile website.

 

1. Responsive Design Techniques

 

Separate m-dot websites (m.example.com) are gone. Mobile-first era has no possible reason for such an implementation.

 

Today’s ideal implementation should consist of a responsive design. This is what is used to call media queries to define display resolutions that the design will support.

 

The benefit to using this kind of structure is that you do not run into the duplicate content issues that you would on an m-dot implementation.

 

2. Coding Images to Increase Site Speed

 

Ask if your two-color backgrounds as the 2 pixel wide by 1200 pixel high repeating backgrounds are really necessary. If not, code it instead. These small optimizations can add up as they are finished.

 

This is definitely something for your next site audit checklist.

 

3. All Content Should Match on Desktop & Mobile

 

The idea behind this best practice is to avoid duplicate content and accusations of cloaking.

 

It’s best to ensure all content is the same on the desktop version of your site as it is on mobile. This is to avoid duplicate content or cloaking accusations.

 

Using responsive design encompasses building a style sheet that uses “media queries” to automatically transition designs between a wide variety of platforms and devices.

 

4. ‘Don’t Even’ with the Flash Video

 

This should be a common practice in this era, but it unbelievably still happens.

 

Funerals were held for flash video as soon as Adobe bought Macromedia and discontinued it, paving the way for HTML 5 video.

 

If you aren’t using at least HTML 5 video on your website, your users could be suffering.

 

5. Schema.org Structured Data is the Way to Go

 

When mobile index is turned up, you will definitely see an increased dependence on Schema. Schema.org structured data is significant in that it identifies pages on your site that contain special or structured information search engines need to see.

 

This is a concise, easy method of understanding information that can then be translated to rich snippets in the mobile search results.

 

Schema structured data should be used even on desktop implementations because it can help you appear in rich snippet results based on your targeted keywords. This can help enhance the visibility of your site when implemented correctly.

 

6. Finally, Don’t Block Supporting Scripts Including JavaScript, CSS, or Even Images

 

This should be common practice with site development for any platform, whether desktop or mobile, but again, it still happens.

 

It is important to ensure that supporting scripts for your mobile design are not blocked to only produce soft 404s  or desktop 404s down the line. Blocking these files will only result in lower rankings if Google cannot crawl the files to see that your website works correctly.