Thursday, 16 June 2011

Smartphones and SEO

We are all looking for easy ways to access the internet, and smartphones may be the answer. Recent reports stated that over 77% of the world’s population in 2011 are mobile subscribers. 
“There are more than 200 million active users [40 percent] currently accessing Facebook through their mobile devices." - Facebook official statistics (January, 2011).
How many times have you looked something up on the internet using your smartphone, however, and not been able to read or use the results?  This happens all the time!

            Each of us that have attempted to read, or do transactions on a four inch screen know of the difficulty that the process has.  Whether it is the inability to read the text provided, the possibility of some information being non-viewable or the inconvenience of endless scrolling, we can all agree that non-mobile formatted websites can be a pain. 

            This is where MSEO comes in. Mobile Search Engine Optimization (SEO) is the process of improving the visibility and convenience of a website or a web page on the display of a mobile device to browse and search for information, as well as manage daily activities.  As a result of these issues, many internet savvy businesses have taken it upon themselves to provide a mobile-formatted version of a website that you are immediately re-directed to when accessing from a mobile device.  

            For example, in the search for Champion Lue Sport Google showed Amazon and Target at the top of their search results. As we can see on the left, Amazon’s mobile SEO formatted website has a useful display of the shoe, as well as all important information pertaining to the sale (model, brand, colour, price and purchase availability).  Unfortunately, on the right, we have much of a different story.  On this non-mobile formatted website, there is no significant information other than the logo of Target, and an enlarged display of a less-than-useful portion of the product image.  Inevitably, a properly formatted website is effective, efficient and convenient, whereas websites such as Target’s are left to become both inconvenient and possibly frustrating for mobile users.

           It’s a tough world out there, therefore it is important to meet the demands of consumers. So, for those who are wishing to create a SEO friendly website, here are some simple guidelines to follow:

1.   Think Mobile

2.   Keep the mobile site very simple - only two pages

3.   Avoid frames

4.   Use metatxt

5.   Design from scratch with xhtml for the design or if you have a WAP site use metatxt to send         ___search engines to the right pages

6.   Think about your titles carefully and ensure they express what your website does

7.   Seed each page with at least two keywords that are also within the metatxt

           Mobile is the message and it’s the most important medium. Seize this opportunity to accelerate mobile presence, campaigns, traffic and visibility of your brand. 

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