How To Optimize Your Website For Google’s Mobile-First Index

2020-09-24 by Ravi Kumar

Mobile phone use for online activities is increasing dramatically all around the globe. Tens of thousands of smartphones are sold every day, mostly in the Asian and African regions. Literally, over a billion people are connected to the internet through their mobile smartphones.

Website owners and even bloggers are increasingly demanding mobile-friendly designs and SEO-centric websites around the world.

Importance of Mobile-Friendly Websites in 2020

Check out some of the facts from a Statista report that prove just how vital mobile phone have become for today’s internet consumers:

  • Impressive global use - There were over 4 billion individual smartphone users around the world in April 2019.
  • Historical mark in mobile usage - Online mobile traffic in January 2019 was reported at 51.56%, surpassing desktop usage for the first time in history.
  • Astounding increase in future mobile use - The report also promises global mobile online traffic to increase 7 times between 2017 and 2022.
  • Increasing mobile web access - The number of users accessing the internet through their mobile phones amounted for 48% of visitors on websites in February 2019.
  • Booming Asian and African market - Africa and Asia seem to lead the race in the booming smartphone industry, with Nigeria and India ranking as the top two mobile smartphone consumers in these regions.
  • Intensive rise in mobile internet access - On an average, over 69.3% of internet users use their smartphones to connect online. 

Mobile smartphones have become omnipresent and the number of mobile users is only increasing at the global level. The ease and efficient portability provided by mobile smartphones for accessing the internet has worked wonders in marking it as one of the top-selling consumer electronic item around the world.

These facts and stats prove just how essential it is for website owners to provide an excellently compatible website for mobile phone users. Google, the most popular and commonly-used search engine introduced the Mobile-First Index recently and sent website owners and developers into a frenzy for solutions. This Google search engine update basically works to rank mobile-friendly websites higher on its search result pages.

Hence, its time you made sure your website is optimized efficiently to suit the criteria in the new Google update. It is highly recommended to hire professional web developers and SEO professionals who can handle mobile-friendly designing and optimization efficiently for your websites.

If you wish to learn the best techniques on how to optimize your website for Google’s Mobile-First Index, these are a few simple tips.

Tips to Optimize Your Website for Google’s Mobile-First Index

Here are the top five ways that a leading company uses to optimize your website for Google’s Mobile-First Index:

#1 – Mobile Friendly Design

Transforming your website into a mobile-friendly version is the first step on the way to prepare for Google’s Mobile-First Index upgrade. Today, SEO is more of an art than a technical skill. Optimizing your website design into a more mobile-friendly one is very helpful in improving Google search rankings.

Expert website designers are skilled at creating extremely mobile-centric websites. Here are a few tips to check to create a more mobile-friendly design for your website:

  • Include Drop Down & Accordion Menus – Google is encouraging use of drop-down menus and accordion lists on websites in an effort to make it easier for users to navigate websites using their mobile phones. These types of menu design on website landing pages help to include larger volume of content into a smaller space on the page.
  • Avoid using Flash – Flash format content is already on a decline with Apple gradually killing off Flash support from its mobile devices. Flash files require longer for loading and hence affects mobile internet user experience negatively. Using Java or HTML5 tools to add visual effects is recommended instead.
  • Implement Finger Friendly Browsing – Consider changing or improving the text size, tap button placement, tap button’s size and the amount of padding separating two tap-targets. It is frustrating when miniscule tap-targets are included in mobile-centric websites that are hard to tap on or even get tapped unknowingly due to their small size and close placement. However, text size of at least 16 pixels is considered essential for clear content browsing on mobile phones.
  • Prevent Pop Ups – Pop-up ads are at times essential for lead generation on websites. However, pop-ups that frequently cover the entire mobile screen result in frustration by user and marks down website quality. Avoid using pop-up ads on your website’s mobile version.

#2 – Speed

The speed of your mobile-friendly website is another important aspect to focus on if you wish to rank your website higher on Google search results. According to the official Developer Programs Tech Lead, Maile Ohye in a Site Performance for Webmasters video, Google currently aims to rank websites higher that load within 0.5 seconds on mobile phones. The simple tips below will show you how to increase the speed of your mobile-friendly website effectively:

  • Improve AMP Project – AMP (Accelerated Mobile Pages) Project is an open source system that helps pages load faster, as compared to conventional HTML.
  • Include PWA – The advanced PWA (Progressive Web App) is an excellent alternative to using AMP Project as it ensures reliable and fast loading as well as provides an overall interactive UX.
  • Integrate optimized images – Optimizing the images on your website into smaller size helps in increasing mobile website loading speed remarkably.
  • Minimize Coding – Remove any unneeded characters for the website’s source code but only those that do not affect its functionality.

After all, above ways to reduce website’s speed I will suggest you to choose a better web hosting company that will reduce website’s loading and ultimately provide you good SERP.

#3 – Using Images, JavaScript & CSS

Earlier, using CSS, JavaScript and images as elements for mobile-friendly website design was frowned upon. However, with recent upgrades to GoogleBot, it is not necessary to avoid using CSS, images or JavaScript for mobile websites.

Using these elements actually helps the Bot to categorize and index your website content for improved Google ranking.

#4 – Push Notifications

Using Push Notifications to promote products and services is an excellent way to defeat the brick-and-mortar retail in your industry. Shoppers are increasingly using their smartphones to check for the products in the store at lower prices. With Push Notifications it becomes extremely easy to advertise and convince targeted customers to switch to online shopping from your e-commerce store.

#5 – Check Out

Professional web developers encourage ecommerce website owners to include the most effective online payment gateways into their online stores in order to streamline the checkout process. To do this, reduce the amount of information the customer needs to enter at checkout page by requiring only the basic payment details in the form.

#6 – On-Page Optimization

It is important to focus on improving on-page optimization levels of websites to make them mobile-friendly. Keeping the title, description and tags short and concise for your mobile website is immensely helpful.

Although these 5 tips on how to optimize your website for Google’s Mobile-First Index will help you understand its importance, only the efforts of skilled web developers and expert SEO professionals will help you to implement these tips successfully. If you want to maximize your website’s potential then hire the best SEO and web development professionals.

Author.: My Name is Ravi Kumar, working at XplorMedia, a digital marketing company in delhi & writer at WHRX. I started learning about it when I was 15 for living and now, I enjoy building products that level the playing field for small business owners to better compete with the big guys.

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Ravi Kumar

Ravi Kumar


Ravi Kumar is a Co-founder at XplorMedia, a digital marketing company in delhi and author at WHRX: With over 5 years writing obituaries content, Ravi has a uniquely wry voice that shines through in his newest collection. He writes on Digital Marketing, AI, Web Hosting, and Other Technical niches. He loves reading, gaming and walking alone and living with his family.

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