Mobile Search & Organic Rankings: What You Need to Know

mobile searchIf you want your business to succeed online, it’s vital to show up on the first page in a Google search. It’s common knowledge that users rarely look beyond the first page of results. Since businesses have figured this out, people have developed a multitude of theories regarding the best way to boost businesses onto the first page of search results via SEO.

However, SEO is a constantly changing industry. Not only is Google regularly updating and improving their algorithm in order to filter out low-quality sites, but advances in technology are changing the optimum way to affect search results. One of the biggest technology advances to affect search engine rankings is the smartphone.

Not many people consider the huge effect that the smartphone has had (and will continue to have) on their online business. Since the smartphone, more and more people have stopped using traditional search in favor of mobile search. Considering the benefits for both user and business, it’s little wonder that experts predict that mobile searches will surpass desktop searches by 2014.

With the growth of mobile search, it’s important to consider how this new technology affects our online marketing efforts. More and more, organic search engine optimization is becoming crucial to seeing long-term benefits that can survive the transition from traditional search to mobile search.

While many companies run Pay-per-Click (PPC) campaigns, the benefits of PPC don’t usually carry over to mobile search as powerfully as organic rankings. On a small mobile screen, search results don’t look the same as they do on a large desktop screen, and often these small paid ads and other mobile marketing efforts get pushed out in favor of Google Places listings and actual results.

Here are some practical facts about mobile search, as well as steps that you can take to make the most of these characteristics:

1. People who are using their mobile phones to search are usually distracted by the other activities going on around them—walking, talking to friends, texting, shopping. Mobile users have little tolerance for irrelevant information, meaning it’s vital to put important and pertinent information first.

  • What this means for you: Be sure to optimize your mobile website, using keywords that matter. Give your users the information that they want right away. Include your phone number (“Call Now” buttons will do wonders for your business), address, store hours, and any special deals.

2. Consumers have greater trust in organic results. Unfortunately, the growth of mobile search complicates matters a little. Since mobile screens are smaller, many PPC ads get pushed out. Not only that, but fewer results are shown per page, meaning that you must rank even higher in order to take advantage of the benefits that come with being on the first page of search results.

  • What this means for you: Partnering with a local online marketing company can be a great investment. A local SEO company can help you rank higher for localized, GPS-based searches. Submit your business information to directories and review sites, such as Google Places, UrbanSpoon, Yelp, and FourSquare. Google and many other search apps use these directory sites to produce first page results, including reviews, phone numbers, and business hours.

As mobile search continues to grow, it is becoming a technology that simply cannot be ignored if you want your business to succeed. Be sure to make your site mobile user-friendly, and talk to a local SEO company about steps to take today in order to make your company more profitable tomorrow.

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Courtenay Stevens is an SEO specialist and an avid blogger. She enjoys using her degree in English and Creative Writing to develop local online marketing tactics that produce high-quality results for small businesses. In her free time, Courtenay enjoys reading, music, and drawing. Editorial Staff Editorial Staff

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The Editorial Staff writes on topics relevant to small and medium-sized business (SMB) owners. Posts cover best practices, top tips, and studies that deliver insights specific to SMBs.

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