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Google is Ranking Mobile Sites Higher. Are You Ready?

By Ron Person , Tuesday, April 7, 2015
Tags Mobile Web

On April 21st Google will send a wakeup call to digital marketers: mobile-ready websites will rank higher in SEO. Google webmaster trends analyst Zineb Ait Bahajji says this will have a bigger impact on the industry than Panda or Penguin. It will create a chasm between marketers who are prepared for mobile and those who aren’t. 

We assessed more than 1,200 marketing organizations for the book Connect: How to use Data and Experience Marketing to Create Lifetime Customers and discovered that 48 percent of marketing organizations had mobile-optimized websites. That leaves more than half unprepared. This is a major missed opportunity in an age when more than 60 percent of web traffic comes from smartphones and tablets.

Great marketers meet each customer with relevant, contextual messages that are accessible on the device that particular customer prefers. This type of experience involves a lot more than just shoving content out a “mobile ready” channel or meeting technical requirements for a mobile-ready website. Chester Zoo in England is a great example of mobile marketing done right. Visitors can order tickets through their mobile device, then use their mobile device while at the zoo to view maps, check schedules, sign up for events, and make store purchases. In their first year with a mobile experience, Chester Zoo saw a 141 percent increase in online ticket sales and a 21 percent increase in site traffic. The second year saw a 40 percent increase in online ticket sales and the third year a 20 percent increase. Mobile readiness has just as much to do with the experience as it does the technical specifications.  

Is your website mobile-ready? Take a quick run through this checklist:

  • Does a significant portion of your traffic come from mobile?
    • Use your analytics tools and look to see what percentage of your visitors and what percentage of your converting visitors come through mobile.
    • Does your website pass Google’s test for mobile readiness?

Visit this page and enter your website’s URL to see how Google assesses your website. If the button turns green, you’re good. 

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