How to Get Your Site Optimized for Mobile

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It’s no big secret in the world of SEO that Google now gives preference to mobile-friendly sites in its search index. Google announced this change in 2016 after discovering that most people using their service were accessing it from a mobile device. Since then, mobile has only become more essential for a website’s ranking. If your site isn’t already doing everything it can to be mobile friendly, there’s no time to delay.

Design for mobile from the ground up

Mobile design is different in almost every way from the traditional desktop website look. Here are some mobile design notes to bear in mind.

Think to fingers

Mobile users are scrolling and moving around on your site using their fingers, not a mouse. Fingers and a small screen equal a higher possibility of accidental taps. The design has to be easy for fingers to navigate and there should be fewer places on the page where accidental taps can happen.

Get rid of Flash

Flash was a standard for desktop sites for a long time, but since Apple disallowed it for their mobile phones you’re really behind the times if you’re using Flash. Get rid of it for your mobile site and use Java or HTML instead.

Ditch the pop-ups

Pop-ups work with desktop sites, but they are a major annoyance for mobile. Mobile devices don’t have room for pop-ups, and a lot of the time users have to scroll around to find a way to kill them. This will drive people away from your site, give you a higher bounce rate, and cause your site’s search ranking to tank.

Keep an eye on your site

An AMP validator tool is the perfect way to make sure your site is always optimized for mobile. The term “AMP” stands for Accelerated Mobile Page, and this tool shows whether your site is letting Google cache pages to serve on mobile devices.

By allowing Google to do this, you make your mobile pages lighter and faster. They load quickly, and that means pleased users and lower bounce rates. It also means less of a burden for your server, since Google puts a lot of the loading effort onto their own servers.

Take advantage of the power of mobile

When mobile devices were young, optimizing for mobile meant blocking things like images and JavaScript. Something like CSS could cause major hangups on a mobile device. Thankfully, today’s mobile devices are lithe and powerful: in many cases they are more powerful than many desktop computers.

There’s no reason now to block JavaScript or any other component that requires a lot of memory or power to load. Modern mobile phones can handle it.

Keep things fast

Just because mobile phones have advanced doesn’t mean you shouldn’t try to make things as speedy as possible. Users are more likely to stick with your site and even return to it, if they have an excellent experience. Fast loading will also mean your site ranks well with Google. To keep things moving, here’s what you need to do.

Use browser caches

Whenever a user visits your site, the browser caches needs to store resources files on their device. This will mean faster loading times when they return.

Optimize images

Don’t block images for your mobile site, but you should optimize them so they can load quickly onto mobile sites. You can speed things up by using CSS3 effects, getting rid of any image resources you don’t really need, and using vector graphics.

Don’t redirect

Lots of redirects cause things to slow down. Evaluate your redirects and only use them when you have to.

Simplify the code

A lot of source code ends up being more complex than necessary. Get rid of all the characters that aren’t absolutely necessary to functionality and your site will load more quickly. If you aren’t already optimized for mobile, then you’re already behind. Get the help you need and get your site back on top as soon as possible.

 

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