Nearly 60% of searches today are conducted on mobile devices versus from a desktop. When optimizing your site’s search presence, keep in mind that the web browsing experience from a smartphone is considerably different from the experience on a desktop. Consider how these differences can affect your mobile SEO:
- Horizontal screen for desktop vs. vertical for mobile. Eye-tracking studies have shown screen viewing patterns on desktop still view left to right but on mobile, users are familiar with the vertical scroll.
- Number of results above the fold. More information appears directly on the bigger 17-24” desktop while at approximately 6-8” depending on device, the mobile experience is much tighter.
- Scroll and click vs. swipe and tap. The greater amount of whitespace available is an advantage for desktops. The swipe and tap experience popularized by mobile is more directly interactive and is becoming adopted for desktop with newer devices.
- Mobile results are volunteered around Knowledge Graph data;
- Phone, click-to-call
- Nearby stores
- Hours of operation
While local retailers understandably love this particular feature of the mobile experience, it can be a serious distraction for B2B organizations whose results may be supplanted, causing a bad experience (and frustration). For example, a search for ‘steel grinder’ generates info about a nearby Home Depot along with store hours, consumer products and reviews, followed by info about a local coffee shop and the benefit of espresso ground using metal vs. ceramic burs. It’s a great experience for a coffee fan or for a consumer looking for new tools at the local hardware store. Not so great for the steel foundry that’s located in the same city but is invisible on mobile search.
Fortunately, there are ways to improve your mobile SEO. Consider these three steps:
- Audit your mobile results. Check to see where you stand, specific to mobile. Don’t simply look at desktop performance and assume everything else is good.
- Make sure your site is mobile responsive. The side benefit is your desktop search results will also benefit from optimizing for mobile. Check your site on a mobile device, does it adjust to the different screen? If not, make sure your next redesign includes mobile responsiveness. If you continue to struggle with mobile rankings, consider creating a unique mobile site.
- Add a street address and phone number to your site’s header or footer. B2B enterprises with multiple locations should include a search optimized locations page with a listing of locations, distributor locations and so forth, depending on the nature of your business.