In recent years, Google has made no secret of the fact that mobile-optimized sites are more important than ever. As a huge portion of Google’s users are on smartphones like the iPhone (and Google makes most of its money from the ad revenue generated by these searches), this makes a great deal of sense. They’ve introduced a number of algorithm updates designed to reward mobile-optimized sites in search results to help make sure things go as smoothly as possible for smartphone and tablet users around the globe.
The problem is that only 56% of small business websites are actually mobile-responsive. When your site is mobile-optimized, you don’t just get a traffic increase: your ad revenue can literally double. Therefore, digital publications will need to be optimized moving forward in order to guarantee the results that they’re looking for.
Taking Advantage of the Mobile Frontier
Thankfully, switching to a mobile-responsive solution is a lot easier than one might think. These are a few key things to keep in mind to help make sure your transition goes as smoothly as possible.
- Responsive Web Design. Also called RWD, this allows you to design a site ONCE and allow it to be optimized for ALL mobile platforms, regardless of the device in question. Embracing RWD will allow you to create a site that works flawlessly on an iPhone and an iPad at the same time, or on an iPhone and a Samsung Galaxy, despite the fact that all of these devices have very different sizes and native resolutions.
- Practice mobile first, everything else second. Because mobile is so important, it should always be your number one priority. Begin your mobile strategy with an outline of how you’ll accomplish your mobile-centric goals and build out for a complementary desktop experience from there.
- SMS Delivery. Smartphone users have the ability to receive text messages all day long, which is something that you should be leveraging to your advantage. If you publish a new piece of content, send users a text to let them know right away that something is now online that may be available to them.
- Native advertising. Native advertising in your digital edition is not only a great way to make sure that your content remains as mobile friendly and as unobtrusive to the experience as possible, but also to help create a new revenue stream at the same time.
- Focus on an actual mobile site instead of an app. We all love apps, but even the best app version of your content can’t replace the gains you’ll get from a mobile optimized site as far as Google is concerned. If you want to create an app, great – but never, under any circumstances, think that it’s a replacement for a strong, mobile-optimized website.
These are just a few of the key ways that you can take action NOW and increase your ad revenue and generate additional income streams via a mobile site. Between focusing on mobile-first, following responsive Web design best practices, using native advertising and more, you’ll not only fall right in line with Google’s recommendations but you’ll also be doing the most important thing of all: creating an enjoyable, easy experience where your users can get the content they want when they want it, period.