Tips for Surviving Mobilegeddon

On April 21st, 2015 Google changed the game, yet again, by making an update to their search algorithm. Web sites designed for mobile now hold a much higher ranking than non mobile-friendly sites. Those not in the mobile race will have to hit the pavement ASAP if they want to appear in a whopping 30 percent of Internet search queries.

Luckily MnSearch addressed these worries with an insightful event on how to “Up Your Mobile Game.” Speakers Aaron Weiche, COO of Spyder Trap, and Angie Schottmuller, an optimization strategist with over 13 years of expertise, offered their tips and advice for a better mobile strategy.

 

Aaron Weiche

There are multiple ways to go mobile but Weiche recommends a responsive design with one site and one CMS (content management system) “for fluid delivery of all of your [web] content.” In his presentation, Weiche listed some key mobile mishaps that you want to avoid, like:

  • The mobile site has redirect issues or has other frequent technical problems.
  • The mobile site is slow.
  • You miss where mobile connects with your business.
  • You’re not viewing everything (Web, social and email) through a mobile lens.

For those just getting started in the mobile game, Weiche says the Google Developer’s Guide is a valuable resource that is great for learning the specifics about becoming mobile-friendly.

There are also several tools that will prove useful when you’re upgrading to mobile. Feedthebot.com will run a diagnosis on your website URL. It shows where on your site you are following Google webmaster guidelines and where you need improvement. According to Weiche, it’s “a Frankenstein of mobile tools to understand how your site performs from a mobile perspective.”

Other resources Weiche recommends to test your website for mobile are Google PageSpeed Insights and tools.pingdom.com (for website speed and usability) and UsabilityHub.com (for user testing and clicks).

Angie Schottmuller

When going mobile, Schottmuller’s first piece of advice is to be aware of “the mobile fold” – a dangerous black hole for mobile sites.

So what exactly is “the mobile fold” and how can you conquer it? The “fold” refers the point on a mobile page where users have to start scrolling down to see the page’s remaining content.

The secret, Schottmuller says, is to try and get your users to scroll past the fold. Basically, you need to give them enticing content before the fold so they feel compelled to scroll past it and read more.

Although it may sound like a small change, it can have a huge effect. Schottmuller says there is a “29 percent conversion lift when people have to scroll the page.”

So what is the recipe for creating simple, yet compelling, content making your users want to scroll the page? Schottmuller says your website needs to “be lean, but not anorexic,” meaning you shouldn’t starve your user’s with “content skeletons” that give little or no actionable information.

When minimizing content for your site, Schottmuller recommends that you ask yourself, “What [am I] cutting that actually adds value?” and keep that in mind when optimizing for mobile. Find Angie Schotmuller’s full SlideShare presentation here.

When going mobile, the process doesn’t have to be stressful. Gather the tools you need, take it one step at a time and always go for quality content over quantity content. It’s not too late to join the race, so strap on your running shoes and start hitting the mobile pavement!

Aaron&Angie photo MnSearch

 

A Special thanks To Aaron Weiche and Angie Schottmuller for weighing in with their advice! Photo by Ovative/group

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