Mobile-optimised websites

The growth of the mobile web continues to be unstoppable and as we also move towards constant connectivity, the words of Google’s marketing VP couldn't be clearer...

The growth of the mobile web continues to be unstoppable and as we also move towards constant connectivity, the words of Google's marketing VP couldn't be clearer:

The possibilities are incredible and the opportunity is huge - and the time is now

In this age of mobile the challenge is making sure your website's good for mobile. Gone are the days of one size fits all - when your potential audience could be at a desktop, laptop, using a tablet or a smartphone. So ensuring that your site is configured for mobile is, of course, essential in getting as many people as possible to view your content.

In order to highlight some of the most important mobile search issues, and to help website owners avoid common mobile configuration mistakes, Google has recently published a set of recommendations for building mobile-optimized websites.

These include things like:

  • Avoiding video content that may be unplayable on mobile devices
  • Ensuring best user experience by redirecting mobile visitors to smartphone-friendly versions of the page or serving the desktop version, rather than serving a 404 error page.
  • Correcting faulty redirects - Google give the example of sites redirecting only users of one mobile OS (e.g. Android) to mobile-optimised content but not the other systems, leaving iOS or Windows Mobile users without access to it.

And what's more, Google's Webmaster Central Blog has stated that sites which are "misconfigured" for smartphones may be subject to ranking changes. This makes perfect sense for two reasons - the first being, of course, that Google wants to point its users in the direction of the most useful content for its mobile users. And the second reason? With mobile advertising already worth nearly 9 billion dollars a year, mobile is a space that's only going to grow bigger.