What it REALLY Means to Be Mobile Optimized in 2019

An image of a person holding a phone outlined in white.

It’s 2019, people. Everyone has a phone on them. In fact, we bet your phone is within arm length to you right now. 70% of web traffic happens on mobile devices, that’s why if your website isn’t developed to be awesome on a mobile device, you’re super behind.
As of July 1st, Google is officially indexing all new sites using mobile-first indexing. What that means is if your site isn’t mobile optimized, it’s going to hurt your search rankings. Because of our giving nature, we have come up with some great tips to get you mobile optimized in 2019.

What is Mobile Optimization?

Technically, it’s “the process of ensuring that visitors who access your site from mobile devices have an experience optimized from the device.”
That’s pretty wordy. As we mentioned before, 70% of web traffic happens on mobile devices (a.k.a. phones). People (and Google) need to be able to conveniently access and navigate your site or else they get frustrated and your metrics tank as a result.

Design Your Site for Mobile

First thing’s first: make sure your website looks good on a phone. This means no matter how your website appears on a desktop, it has to be able to reformat itself on a tablet or phone.
Responsive design doesn’t stop with aesthetics. Your design also needs to be easy to use and simple to navigate. Think about every mobile site you’ve been on. You’ve probably seen those three lines in the corner that expand into a menu. Elements like this are designed to optimize the mobile user experience, and they make sites easy, not frustrating, to navigate.

Optimize Mobile Content for Local Search

If your business serves a community, you need to make sure your mobile content is fully optimized for local search. Incorporate local keywords into headings and URLs. Add contact information, and use Google Maps integration so users can easily locate your business.

Page Speed

We’re a pretty impatient society, if page doesn’t load in seconds, we are out. Google measures mobile site speed to rank websites in search engine results, it’s also a huge part of the user experience.
Users want their sites to load in 2 seconds or less. That’s pretty stinkin’ fast. So how can you speed up your site and get your page loaded before people start bouncing?
Think small. If your code is complicated, make sure to minify it. If your pictures are huge, resize them. Bulky design elements and images can eat up precious loading time. Make sure to slim down your code to only include what’s necessary. Sound difficult? Don’t worry. We’re here to help.

AMP Up Speed

AMP stands for Accelerated Mobile Pages, and these things are about to be your best friends. If you want to get fancy, an AMP is a page that features extremely simplified HTML. It was specifically designed to make pages that load super quickly, so if your site is dragging, these guys are going to be a great solution. Connect with your developer and let them know that you need some AMPs to make your pages lightning quick.

Test it

Once you’ve implemented all of these tips, you need to make sure everything works. Luckily, Google released a tool: Google’s Mobile Friendly Test. All you have to do is input your website’s URL, and Google does the rest. Your results will (hopefully) look something like ours:
a photo of 8THIRTYFOUR's Google Mobile Page results test
Mobile optimization is great, but it can seem overwhelming. Need someone to take care of your digital needs? Grab a coffee with us, and we can help you out.

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