24 Apr 2015

5 Reasons Your Small Business Website Needs to be Mobile Optimized

mobilegeddon

The Future is Mobile

The latest search engine algorithm change from Google makes mobile-friendliness more important than ever for your website. Mobile-friendliness is now a ranking signal that affects mobile searches in all languages worldwide. While this allows consumers to more easily find relevant, high-quality search results optimized for their devices, it also means that businesses without a mobile-optimized website will miss out on valuable search traffic and possibly lose sales opportunities. Here are a few more things you need to know about the update:

  • If your website is not mobile-friendly, you will lose your search ranking on mobile devices. As a result, you may also lose organic traffic coming from mobile devices and miss out on sales
  • This update is larger than two of the previous more well-known updates, Panda and Penguin
  • This update affects your website, landing pages and blog

Why does this matter for your business?

52 percent of mobile searches for business information occur while consumers are on the go, and this percentage is increasing each year. Mobile searches are more common than ever, and if your website can't be found in mobile search results, it can't be found by your customers either. Here are the five biggest reasons your small business website needs to be mobile optimized. 

1. Mobile responsiveness is important for SEO 

One single URL is easier for search engines to crawl than multiple URLs. While many businesses used to have one website for desktop viewing and a separate one for mobile, search engines like Google now favor one singular website with responsive design. These pages typically perform better than their non-responsive counterparts and are much easier to maintain than a separate mobile website. Obviously, the latest ranking signal in Google's algorithm means that mobile-friendly websites will outrank non-mobile sites in the search results on mobile devices. 

2. Everyone is on mobile devices

More than half of all local searches are performed on a mobile device, yet only nine percent of small businesses have mobile responsive websites. Those other 91 percent are truly at a disadvantage, especially when you consider these statistics from Google/Nielsen and Smart Insights:

  • More than 20 percent of Google searches are performed on a mobile device
  • Mobile searches will surpass desktop searches by more than 27 billion queries per year by 2016
  • In the United States, 25 percent of internet users only access the internet on a mobile device
  • 59 percent of consumers visit a business' website when conducting a mobile search
  • 61 percent of people have a better opinion of brands when they offer a good mobile experience
  • 25 percent of all emails are opened on mobile phones, and 10 percent are opened on tablets  

3. Mobile responsiveness works with your social media and blogging

The latest research from ComScore shows 55 percent of social media consumption takes place on a mobile device. Now, consider all of your blogging and social media posting: if you are sharing links to your blog or website on social media and do not yet have a mobile-friendly website, you are going to experience low conversion rates, high bounce rates, and a very frustrated audience. 

4. Mobile-friendly sites provide a positive user experience 

Provide a positive experience on your website, and visitors are more likely to convert to customers. In fact, Google's Think Insights claim that 67 percent of mobile users are more likely to buy a product or use a service if the website is mobile responsive and easy to use. In contrast, 61 percent of visitors who land on a mobile website leave right away if the site is slow or not optimized for their mobile device. Google recommends that your webpages should take no longer than two seconds to fully load on mobile devices, and the content above the fold should load in less than a second. To fully take advantage of mobile devices, your website must:

  • Avoid using outdated software, such as Flash
  • Allow for easy reading without requiring users to zoom
  • Automatically adjust to the size of the screen
  • Place links far enough apart to allow for easy navigation

5. Responsive design adapts to future devices 

Responsive website design is an investment in the future. Because mobile-friendly websites adjust for the screen size, not the particular device, your website will display properly on new devices not yet released. As a result, you won't have to redesign your website every time a new iPhone or smartwatch is released.

It is no longer an option to make your website mobile-friendly if you want to grow your business online. If you want to see the value of a mobile responsive website, use this simple step-by-step tool to calculate how mobile search drives sales. You can also use Google's mobile testing tool to see whether your website is responsive.

At CyberMark, we are experienced in all facets of internet marketing for small businesses. Please contact us today for a free mobile-friendly website evaluation and see how we can help your local business get found in mobile searches. Get ahead of your competition and improve your website as soon as possible to avoid a significant drop in search traffic on mobile devices.

Free Mobile Website Evaluation