In April 2015, Google began using a new ranking algorithm that favored businesses with mobile-friendly websites. If your business’ mobile site was up to snuff, you probably didn’t notice. But if it wasn’t, you might have experienced a drop in page views, click-throughs and even sales.
While the shift spelled trouble for some, creating a mobile-friendly business site is still a possibility – even if you’re starting from scratch. Just follow these five simple steps:
Step One: Don’t Resist
According to Google, 94% of smartphone users search out location information with their device. Without a mobile-friendly site, you’re more than missing out with these potential customers, you’re practically going dark. If you don’t feel you need a mobile-friendly site, it’s time to reconsider. And if you’ve been putting it off, it’s time to stop.
Step Two: Choose a Resource
Thankfully, it’s easier than ever to create a mobile-friendly site. In fact, if you created your original website with a provider like Weebly, Wix or WordPress, they automatically convert to something mobile friendly. And if you didn’t, these and other providers can help (search ‘mobilize website’ online). Many make it simple enough to do yourself and still get an appealing end result.
Step Three: Remember the Four C’s
Everything your mobile site represents should be based on the four C’s:
- Customer – Ask yourself what the customer would need from your mobile site to make an informed decision. Put yourself in his or her shoes.
- Content – Include content that provides a clear picture of your business, such as hours, directions, menus, special offers, testimonials, pictures and anything else you feel is important.
- Context – Remember that mobile users can be searching from different locations, at different times of day and at varying points in the buying cycle. Create content that takes context into account.
- Conversion – Know what you want visitors to do when they visit your mobile site and lead them to it. Conversion could be clicking on a special offer, signing up for email alerts, visiting in person or something else.
Step Four: Analyze and Adjust
Google provides a variety of tools to help you determine if your mobile site is performing. Not only can you learn which keywords are driving traffic, you can also compare differences between mobile and conventional site traffic. Search results differ between these channels 62% of the time, so it’s important to know where to adjust.
Step Five: Stay In Touch
A successful mobile-friendly site evolves to serve its users. To ensure yours stays relevant, take an active role in its ongoing management. Technology can change quickly, and one lost step can leave you in a competitor’s digital dust. If you don’t have time, delegate to a trusted and capable employee or consider outsourcing. Even if it costs extra, the payoff in the long run will be worth it.
In less than a decade, consumers have migrated away from conventional websites to mobile-friendly ones that accommodate life on the move. As a small business owner, you can make the most of it by shifting with them.