Google announced on February 26th that, come April 21st, it will expand mobile-friendliness as yet another critical ranking factor. While we have yet to decide if device-website compatibility had already reached its peak or not, a fact remains – Google will punish websites that are not mobile-friendly. Mobile-friendliness is not all about making your website available on mobile devices, however. Making your site mobile-friendly will also do a lot to your optimization efforts. Let’s take a look at 5 benefits of having a mobile-responsive website shared by my web designer friend who works for a web design in Louisville, KY company.
1) A responsive website eliminates duplicate content
Publishing duplicate contents is a deceptive practice, and Google is not in favor of this that’s why it punishes websites with non-unique contents through its Panda algorithm. An m. version of your website is a standalone website that Google crawls separately despite having the same URL with their desktop counterparts. According to Google, mobile versions of websites that inherently contain the same contents as the master sites won’t be hit by Panda.
2) A responsive website builds stronger links
Each page of a responsive website has a corresponding URL. A link to the master website is essentially a link to the mobile website. With this, PageRank will not be diluted, making your backlink profile stronger and more effective for the users. Making your master website responsive means that you are maintaining the backlinks that the site earned long before Google even made such announcement. This also means that you can further build your backlink portfolio as there is no need to build it from scratch.
3) A responsive website reduces bounce rate
Bounce rate is another ranking factor that Google uses. Aside from this, Google also uses this factor in gauging user satisfaction. When Google drops your website for a particular keyword or key phrase because Google deemed its content as not valuable enough to the users, this means less traffic on your website. Responsive websites are usually designed for optimal user experience regardless of the device used in searching. Specifically, navigation is optimized and the page elements are scaling according to the size of the screen. Only the most important page elements will be shown to the users. Hence, there is no need to compromise the contents that you want to display to your users. Visitors are kept on the site since they are ensured of finding the information that they are actually looking for.
4) A responsive website reduces page load speed
Another crucial SEO ranking factor is speed. Slow load speeds impact user experience and thereby, bounce rate. Responsive websites do not require query redirects, reducing the website’s page load speed. Other than that, mobile users expect the responsive site to load in 1 to 2 seconds otherwise they will go to the next available and faster website.
5) A responsive website increases search ranking
Google treats mobile searches and results separately. In line with this, Google claims that mobile-optimized websites rank higher and better in mobile searches or those searches made through a mobile device. This is especially true for local SEO.
Perhaps, not just obeying what Google demands us to do with our websites. Knowing that more and more people are becoming mobile-first users, it is about time to seriously consider responsive web design. Mobile-optimized websites have tremendous benefits including several SEO wins as the above. A responsive design is a modern design that fits the modern users. So, make sure that you prioritize this one.
About the Author: Jeric
Jeric is a Filipino blogger and an online marketing enthusiast. Currently working at Optimind Technology Solutions, a digital marketing agency in the Philippines that provides different services including SEO, web design, mobile app development and much more!